Category Archives: Featured

Brixham fisherman can’t trade on quay

A Brixham fisherman has described his ‘David and Goliath’ battle to sell his catch on the quayside as post-covid law changes leave him high and dry, Tristan Northway, whose boat Adela is the smallest and oldest in the Brixham fleet, was able to bring fresh fish to the quay as byelaws were relaxed during the pandemic. But now the regulations are back into force and he is driving thousands of motorway miles to sell his catch instead of selling it locally. Mr Northway presented a 763-signature petition to the council at its full meeting, calling for a review of existing byelaws to allow him and other small-scale fishermen in Torbay harbours to sell their catch directly from their boats. >>click to read<< 17:21

Maine Lawmaker/Lobsterman and Sternman ‘lucky to be alive’ after a “giant rogue wave” from Lee flips lobster boat

What does a lobsterman do when faced with a wall of water bearing down on him, his boat and his crew? Billy Bob Faulkingham had just finished hauling traps near Turtle Island on Friday, Sept. 15, one day before Hurricane Lee was poised to hit the Maine coast, when his 40-foot lobster boat, 51, was flipped upside down by a huge wave that seemingly came out of nowhere. “We got hit by a massive rogue wave,” he told The American. “It rolled my 40-foot boat like a toy and landed her on top of us. I’ve never seen anything like it.” Faulkingham survived without harm, while his sternman Alex Polk suffered a broken arm and a gash on his head. His lobster boat currently rests at the bottom of the ocean. He estimated 51 was in about 50 feet of water when the 40-foot wave struck. “God was with us,” he said. >>click to read<< 17:21

Bore Head says Hello from our living room, which is more comfortable than a hospital room.

I’m grateful to the wonderful health care professionals, Doctors, Nurses, Nurses’ aides, and the hospital staff. for doing what they do. I’ve been poked, prodded, and there is still plenty more of that in in the upcoming days and weeks, I look forward to none of this, for myself, or for Carol, who is making sure I get where I need to be. Thank you, Darling. Thank you for everything you’ve ever done for me, Sweetheart. While in the hospital, some things stay on your mind and in my case, it’s you guys and gals, the dead whales, and offshore windfarms loss of your fishing grounds, over-regulation, the potential destruction of the lobster industry worldwide, were talked about to fresh batches of uninformed health care professional people as they changed shifts. Everyone, I believe, was amazingly astounded saying they hadn’t seen anything of it till we showed them some of the imagery being censored from their view. >>click to read<< 14:00

‘I can’t imagine being anywhere else’: The call of the ocean came naturally for six-year-old Petty Harbour fisherman

In the heart of the vast ocean, just off the shores of Petty Harbour, where the sun danced on the water’s surface, and the salty breeze kissed the cheeks of those who dared to venture, there came a moment that would forever be etched in the memory of six-year-old fisherman Austen Chafe. As the boat gently glided on the waves, an unexpected visitor emerged from the depths — a majestic tuna, gleaming with power and grace. In a split second, the world changed, as the tuna leaped and bestowed upon Austen a gift of seawater, laughter and an enduring love for the sea. “When that tuna splashed on me,” Austen said, his eyes sparkling with the memory, “I felt like the luckiest kid in the world. It’s moments like these that make me love the ocean even more. There’s something magical about being out here, and I can’t imagine being anywhere else.” Born into a family of fishermen, the call of the ocean was as natural as the rhythm of the tides for young Austen. Photos, >>click to read<< 09:34

‘A Gulf and National Issue’: Southeast Texas shrimpers struggling to survive due to influx of imported shrimp

With an an influx of imported shrimp taking over the market, it’s becoming tougher for Southeast Texas shrimpers to survive. Since July 16, the Texas waters opened back up for fishing, but Eric Kyle Kimball’s boat “The Seahorse” has yet to leave the dock at the Sabine Pass Port Authority. Kimball is a third generation fisherman who’s been around the industry for 55 years. This career help provides for him and his family, with brown shrimp being the main source of income. Shrimp imported from across the globe are driving prices down from $3.75 per pound in the 80’s to 95 cents per pound, currently. After paying for fuel and deck hands, area fisherman can’t break even. Video, >>click to read<< 09:49

His passion is lobstering, his worry is the future

Christopher Robert Tobey Jr. was born on July 22, 1991, in Portland, into a family of fishermen. He spent a lot of time on the docks and water. He watched his father and grandfather talk with other fishermen and learned the lingo. He also learned a lot by going to other docks because everyone does things differently. “As a little kid, I always knew who everyone was and what their boat was,” he said. Tobey’s father always told him fishing wasn’t easy, but it was there if he wanted it. “I started lobster fishing because my father was a lobster fisherman, and when I was a kid that’s all I wanted to do,” he said. However, fishing is dangerous. And on May 11, 2008, Tobey’s life changed forever. “It was Mother’s Day, a Sunday, and we went out to go fishing to fill some orders for a couple of my dad’s friends,” Tobey said. “I remember it was me, my father and another fisherman, Robbie Blackburn. He was working for my dad. We went out and it was a great day and the weather started to turn.” >>click to read<< 09:53

Fishing Industry Icon Francis J. O’Hara, Sr., of Camden, Maine, has passed away

Francis “Frank” Joseph O’Hara Sr., 91, died on August 3, 2023, at his home in Camden, Maine surrounded by his family. Born in Boston, Massachusetts on October 29, 1931, he was the son of Francis Joseph and Dorothy (MacCalduff) O’Hara. He married Donna “Jill” Hildreth in Portland, Maine, on January 11, 1953. Frank was a devoted family man and a devout Catholic. He supported many local organizations and causes and was a strong believer in public service. He flipped pancakes at the Camden Snow Bowl, sat on the Camden National Bank and Owls Head Transportation Museum boards, and served on the New England Fishery Management Council. Under his leadership, O’Hara Corporation, a 115-year-old, fifth-generation family-owned and operated commercial fishing company, expanded its influence from the coast of Maine to the Pacific NW, Alaska and China. >>click to read<< 13:57

Blue Harvest to shut down, ending reign over New England groundfish

Blue Harvest Fisheries is set to shut down all fishing operations on Friday, its fishermen were told this week. It marks the last in a cascade of sales and closures for the billionaire-backed business venture that once aimed to “dominate” the New England fishing industry but ended up overcapitalized and belly up on the dock.  The company launched in 2015, flush with private equity capital, and expanded at a rapid clip to become the single-largest groundfish permit holder in New England. It still owns the permits and vessels, but seafood industry sources say, after the shut down, a quick sale or bankruptcy filing is likely.  “A big rise leads to a big fall,” said Luke deWildt, captain of the Teresa Marie IV, >>click to read<< 07:52

Offshore wind projects may be cancelled in NJ, according to report

Already facing a series of lawsuits and opposition from state and local officials, Danish wind power developer Orsted is reporting huge financial losses. Those losses, company officials warned, could reach $2.3 billion in the U.S and may force the cancellation of projects of the New Jersey coast. In a conference call with investors, Orsted CEO Mads Nipper told them, “If the walk-away scenario is the economical, rational decision for us, then this remains a real scenario for us.” Orsted is considering “walking away” from or cancelling projects in New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Connecticut and Maryland. >>click to read<< 08:48

Experts fear American fishing industry, boating at risk as Biden prioritizes climate, green energy

The Biden administration has prioritized green energy at the expense of endangered whales and the U.S. fishing industry with regulation that limits both commercial fishing and recreational boating, according to experts. As they are imposing more regulations, they are also promoting offshore wind, which is actually harming commercial and recreational boating and potentially killing whales, Brady and Lapp said.  “They positioned us as being these evildoers and now, 20 years later, whales are dropping dead like pigeons in Manhattan,” Brady said. “Here commercial fishermen and coastal communities are at the front line of fighting to protect the ocean itself, and we have crickets from virtually every NGO.” Video, >>click to read<< 09:09

Green Groups Turn a Blind Eye to Mysterious Increase in Whale Deaths

Several environmentalist groups campaign against offshore oil and gas projects because of their ecological impacts, but those same groups appear to apply less scrutiny to the potential impacts of offshore wind developments. The Sierra Club, the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) and Greenpeace have all advocated for East Coast offshore wind projects amid the increase in whale deaths after slamming offshore oil and gas projects for their environmental impacts. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has declared “unusual mortality events” for humpback and North Atlantic right whales since 2016 and 2017, respectively, a timeline which generally coincides with the start of offshore wind development off of the East Coast in 2016, according to NOAA’s website. >>click to read<< 12:09

‘They’re not listening’: Fishermen, tribes voice concerns on two Oregon coast sites eyed for offshore wind farms

Last week, the Federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) announced two draft Wind Energy Areas off the southern Oregon coast. One of them is offshore of Brookings, near the California border, the other off the coast of Coos Bay. The areas also represent prime fishing grounds and important cultural areas to local Indigenous tribes. Heather Mann, executive director of the Newport-based Midwater Trawlers Cooperative, said it feels like a lot of stakeholders’ concerns are being left unheard.  “They’re not listening to coastal communities. They’re not listening to the fishing industry. They’re not listening to congressional representatives,” said Mann, whose organization represents 32 vessels that fish in the area. “Fishermen are not just concerned about being displaced from fishing grounds, though that is a critical piece. ” Video, >click to read< 11:35

New documentary ‘proves’ building offshore wind farms does kills whales

The increase in whale, dolphin, and other cetacean deaths off the East Coast of the United States since 2016 is not due to the construction of large industrial wind turbines, U.S. government officials say. Their scientists have done the research, they say, to prove that whatever is killing the whales is completely unrelated to the wind industry. But now, a new documentary, “Thrown to the Wind,” by director and producer Jonah Markowitz, which I executive produced, proves that the US government officials have been lying. The film documents surprisingly loud, high-decibel sonar emitted by wind industry vessels when measured with state-of-the-art hydrophones. Video, >click to read<

Body found in ocean Monday confirmed to be missing lobsterman Tylar Michaud

The mother of a Down East lobsterman who disappeared a month ago while fishing confirmed Thursday night that a body found in the ocean Monday morning was that of her son. Valerie Kennedy notified a Press Herald reporter that authorities have confirmed the body belongs to her son, 18-year-old Tylar Michaud, of Steuben. Kennedy declined to comment further. A Jonesport lobsterman discovered the body floating in the Atlantic Ocean near Addison on Monday morning, exactly a month after Michaud was last seen in the area. The body was taken to the Maine Medical Examiner’s Office in Augusta to be identified. >click to read< 07:54

Fife fishing boat recovered as appeal continues to find culprit who sank it

A Fife fishing boat that was sank by a hooded stranger has been recovered. The operation to bring the Tina Louise back above water at Methil Harbour lasted all day on Wednesday. But the boat has now been removed, meaning owners Tina and Ross Coventry can claim insurance for the £50,000 worth of damage caused last month. “The boat is a complete write-off but we are hoping to sell some bits off from it,” Tina said. The couple, who run a shellfish delivery service, say the incident has put them out of business for months. Video, >click to read< 07:56

Battery-Electric Fishing Vessel Marks a Sea Change for Small Commercial Fishers

On a brisk morning this fall, a 46-foot commercial fishing boat will cruise into the cold waters of Sitka, Alaska, and cut the diesel engine. In that moment of near silence, an electric motor will whir to life. This moment will mark a sea change for Sitka’s small-boat commercial fishing industry: a transition to energy-efficient commercial fishing, powered by low- and zero-emissions propulsion systems. The boat in question, a small commercial salmon troller named I Gotta, will make history as one of the first low-emissions fishing vessels ever deployed in Alaska. Using a unique parallel hybrid battery-diesel system, the boat can travel at full speed using its diesel engine, then switch to a battery-electric motor when fishing. In this way, I Gotta’s captain, Eric Jordan, will be able to cut the boat’s fuel use by 80%. >click to read<

Water release finds little support in Fukushima

Most Fukushima fishermen are tight-lipped but Haruo Ono can’t keep his thoughts to himself on Japan’s plans to release treated cooling water from the stricken nearby nuclear power plant into the Pacific from Thursday. “Nothing about the water release is beneficial to us. There is no advantage for us. None. It’s all detrimental,” Ono, who lost his brother in the 2011 tsunami that crippled the plant, told AFP. “Fishermen are 100 percent against,” the 71-year-old said at his modest home in Shinchimachi, around 60 kilometres (40 miles) north of the nuclear plant in northeast Japan. “The sea is where we work. We make a living off of the sea, we’re at the mercy of the sea. So if we don’t protect the sea, who would?” >click to read< 07:43

Maine lobsterman lost at sea remembered for dedication to family and friends

A Steuben teenager and lobsterman was collectively remembered for his positive attitude, wisecracks, blue eyes and bushy eyebrows when several hundred people gathered Sunday for a memorial service in a Sullivan school gymnasium. Nearly a month after Tylar Michaud, 18, went missing at sea while hauling lobster traps, and roughly 10 weeks after he graduated from Sumner Memorial High School. Michaud’s extended family, friends and members of the community gathered for a celebration of his life at the school. Michaud’s sense of humor, dedication to his family and friends, and his love of the outdoors figured prominently in their remarks. >click to read< 07:29

Sinking of the Wild Alaskan – Document Dump #35

It is almost comical to think that the Kodiak Daily Mirror suppressed this story for over 4 months when my lawsuit was originally filed and now that a Federal Judge has dismissed portions of my lawsuit against Federal Agents with prejudice; the Kodiak Daily Mirror which has now proven themselves to be an ankle biting lap dog of the City and the Feds rushes to print this story in yet another front-page, one-sided news article. The Kodiak Daily Mirror also wrote in the article, “Neither Byler nor U.S. Attorney Glenn James Shidner was available for comment at press time Monday.” This statement to all of our local readers in Kodiak was 100% total B.S. I was never contacted by phone, email, text message, nor on my Facebook page that now has more readers than the Kodiak Daily Mirror. Can any of you that have been following this story possibly imagine that I would not have a comment on this issue. I am going to have to give this flat out, false statement, 4 Pinocchio’s and the Publisher Kevin Bumgarner has just earned himself another photo with his clown hat at the ‘Sinking of the Wild Alaskan’ Facebook page. >click to read< 13:48

Hull tower blocks named in honour of trawler campaigner women

Three tower blocks in Hull have been renamed in honour of women who fought for new safety laws after a slew of fishing tragedies in the 1960s. Dubbed the Headscarf Revolutionaries, Yvonne Blenkinsop, Lillian Bilocca, Christine Jensen and Mary Denness changed the fishing industry for good. They took action after a triple trawler tragedy in 1968 which saw the loss of three Hull trawlers and 58 crew. Name plaques on the Porter Street flats were unveiled on Friday. The women’s campaign started when 58 fishermen lost their lives in three separate trawler sinkings in the space of less than a month in 1968. The trawlers – St Romanus, Kingston Peridot and Ross Cleveland – all sank in quick succession, and only one man survived. Photos, >click to read< 08:50

Fall fishery finally gets underway

On calm waters on a beautiful August morning, the fall lobster season in LFA 25 finally opened on Sunday following several delays due to weather conditions. The fall fishery was scheduled to open on Aug 9, but last Monday the Department of Fisheries and Ocean (DFO) decided to delay the opening until at least Aug 10 because of unfavourable forecasts. On Aug 11, it was confirmed that the LFA 25 fall lobster season would open at 6 am on Sunday, but only to set the gear. An agreement was made there would be no lobster fishing on Sunday. Photos, >click to read< 08:44

Commercial Fishing on the Great Lakes is a Family Affair

Although the number of fishermen who make a living on the waters of the Great Lakes is much diminished from a half century ago, the region’s commercial whitefish fishery continues to be viable and profitable. Henriksen Fisheries is one of about a dozen commercial entities in the Wisconsin waters of Lake Michigan, focused on trap netting whitefish in Green Bay and the waters surrounding the Door Peninsula. Charlie Henriksen started his family-owned fishing business in Door County in 1987. Originally from Illinois, the Henriksen family enjoyed vacations in Door County, and eventually bought a hotel on the peninsula and became year-round residents. Charlie was enticed into joining friends fishing on the water, and it eventually became his full-time vocation. In 1989 he purchased his first boat. Photos, >click to read< 18:55

Erik Anderson: Facts about lost fishing gear

For those who read Rep. Gregg Hill’s Op/Ed (8/8/23) on lost or abandoned lobster gear in NH state waters, it would be appropriate to correct his misguided accusations and fabricated calculations with more clarity and accuracy that the subject deserves. Without doubt, lobster traps and fishing gear are lost every year as a result of a variety of circumstances and the nature of the beast in the conditions and environment that the fishery operates. It is humbling when a gear loss occurs to a fisherman, and I can attest that each one of us goes through an exhaustive process to recover that gear with a high rate of success. Today’s lobsterman is extremely protective of his gear as cost of a single trap exceeds $100 or more, and affording any loss is not tolerable. Rep. Hill, as a layman, has distorted this subject to an order of magnitude that does not exist. Fishing practices in NH lend to good policy for minimizing any gear loss and through cooperation, understanding and regulations with NH Fish & Game, this state does an admirable job in its environmental and resource sensitivity. I say this with confidence and experience from 50 years in the fishery. >click to read the op-ed< 10:17

PWS Seine fleet reacts to low prices

Halfway through the Prince William Sound seine season, captains and crew are reacting to a dramatic drop in pink and chum salmon prices. The price updates came in the form of official letters and informal text messages from various processors this week. Grounds price for pink salmon hovers at $.23/lb with chum salmon prices following at $.20/lb. Rumors of chum price dipping below $.20/lb were also reported by fishermen. The seine fleet has seen a season patterned by frequent closures this year. Jamel Lister is a seasonal deckhand who has returned to work in the fishery for his seventeenth year, this season aboard the F/V Gorbushka. Lister said although he does pay attention to salmon markets leading up to the season, a poor forecast or low price does not deter him from returning each summer.  >click to read< 12:25

Miz Shirley’s Shrimp Shack after Hurricane Ian

Captain James and Shirley Driggers, owners of Miz Shirley’s Shrimp Shack, have been shrimping for nearly three decades, before Hurricane Ian. Shirley and James sell freshly-caught pink shrimp in Key West. “We started doing this because we need a house but also we need to stay in business. We need to keep our boat up,” Shirley said. Before Hurricane Ian, Shirley and James would pack their boat (named Miz Shirley) with shrimp and unload at the dock on Fort Myers Beach. The couple hired a captain to take Miz Shirley into Key West waters for shrimp, while James and Shirley sell. Video, >click to read< 09:05

Ex-fisherman Derry brightens up Mey pier with boat artwork

A Canisbay man is using his artistic skills to enhance a north coast quayside – 44 years after he played a key role in an improvement scheme that was officially opened by a visiting rock star. Derry Ross (76) is adding new colour to a series of fishing boat designs that embellish the pier at picturesque Phillip’s Harbour, Mey, having been foreman when it was rebuilt in the late 1970s. He created the designs on the concrete wall as part of the original renovation project and now, with more time on his hands, the ex-fisherman is painstakingly painting between the outlines while also adding fresh details. Some show trawlers of the type he used to work on, based in Aberdeen, while others depict Danish-style boats. The upgraded harbour was officially opened in April 1979 by Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page. Photos, >click to read< 08:09


In 2010 and 2012 fishermen held two different successful protests in Washington DC with thousands of fishermen travelling from around the country to attend. Both commercial and recreational fishermen voiced their concerns regarding catch shares and Magnuson Act reauthorization, among the multitude of issues that threatened their livelihoods. Today, the fishing industry is facing a far worse enemy then fishery management, as thousands of square miles of their historic fishing grounds have been auctioned off to the highest bidder in order to make way for the wildlife killing machines called wind turbines. These auctions have been held by BOEM, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, a part of the Department of the Interior. They are charged with the selling or leasing of US natural resources in our offshore waters, and apparently, they have absolutely no regard for any wildlife that may exist within them, or any people who might derive a living from catching said wildlife. >click to read< 11:50

Setting Her Own Course – Lobstering with Lunenburg Harvester Gail Atkinson

Gail Atkinson is one of Canada’s very few female lobster harvesters, who employs an almost entirely female crew aboard the Nellie Row. Gail Atkinson grew up on Cape Sable Island in Southwest Nova Scotia. Coming from a long line of fish harvesters and boat builders, she originally had no desire to follow in her family’s footsteps. “I ended up starting fishing with my father,” said Atkinson. “I started when I was a little bit older because I couldn’t wait to get out of there. But, something happened, and I just ended up back there and I ended up going for a trip fishing, and I just fell in love with it. The rest was history.”  Atkinson spent almost 20 years fishing with her father before she went off on her own to run an enterprise. Photos, >click to read< 13:39

Scintilla Maris: 46m trawler converted into explorer yacht in Holland

The 45.6-metre beam fishing trawler yacht Scintilla Maris has completed a full-scale conversion at her home shipyard of Damen Maaskant shipyard in the western Netherlands. The vessel underwent a huge variety of modifications to turn her into a capable and competent explorer yacht, while also reducing the yacht’s 570GT to below the 500GT threshold. Elsewhere, the yard’s goal of paring down the internal volume has meant more semi-enclosed and open spaces. Ten guests can be accommodated in the lower deck in four double cabins and a large owner’s suite amidships underneath the original hatch into the fish hold. 2 photos, >click to read< 12:18

‘He was bigger than life’: Family of missing lobsterman plans memorial

The last day Tylar Michaud went out to haul and set his lobster traps near Petit Manan Point, a thick fog hugged the coast of Down East Maine. The routine was familiar for the 18-year-old fisherman from the small fishing village of Steuben. He grew up on the water learning how to catch lobster alongside his stepfather Bryant Kennedy, a fourth-generation lobsterman. But on July 21, something went wrong. That evening, Michaud’s boat, F/V Top Gun, was found still in gear, moving in a slow arc with no one aboard. An intense search began. Nearly two weeks later, it continues even as his family, friends and others in the close-knit fishing community acknowledge that he did not survive and start to celebrate the young man who made an impression on everyone he met. >click to read< 07:42