Category Archives: Mid Atlantic

NMFS Weighing Privately Funded Assessment of Summer Flounder Stock

For the first time, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) will consider privately funded science in formulating regulations for summer flounder. Funded by the Save the Summer Flounder Fishery Fund (SSFFF) and its contributing partners, a groundbreaking sex-structured model created by Dr. Patrick Sullivan of Cornell University was presented in January to the NMFS’ Stock Assessment Workshop in the hope of obtaining a clearer picture of the summer flounder population. The ultimate goal is to improve the accuracy of the next stock assessment,,, >click to read< 23:14

Hit TV series ‘Wicked Tuna,’ filmed off Cape Ann, releases a new season

The fishing tales of six captains on the hunt for giant tuna swim through the airwaves starting next month, when National Geographic’s hit series “Wicked Tuna” premieres its seventh season. The stakes are always high at sea, as the Gloucester-based fishermen compete to pull in the most lucrative catch of “monstah” bluefin, which can be worth upward of $20,000 per tuna. Season seven kicks off with an extended 90-minute episode on Sunday, March 11, at 9 p.m. on the National Geographic Channel. >click to read< 10:10

What Does the Jones Act Mean for Offshore Wind?

The Block Island Wind Farm, a 30-megawatt wind farm located just off the coast of Rhode Island, began operations in December 2016, fulfilling the goal of the project’s developer, Deepwater Wind LLC, to build America’s first offshore wind farm. The Block Island Wind Farm consists of only five wind turbines and is tiny in comparison to the large offshore wind farms operating off the coasts of Europe, but Deepwater Wind is planning larger wind farms off the coasts of New York, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Maryland and New Jersey. Other developers are doing the same with other projects up and down the East Coast of the United States. >click to read< 14:37

Man Gets 56 Months for False Distress Calls, Threats to Coast Guard

A 39-year-old Newport News man was sentenced in Norfolk federal court on Tuesday to 56 months in prison for making a false distress call and threats to the U.S. Coast Guard, officials said.
Justin P. Stahmer was convicted of the crimes by a federal jury on Nov. 13, 2017, according to a U.S. Department of Justice news release. Court documents state that Stahmer made a false distress call on June 20, 2016 while several miles northeast of Cape Henry. >click to read<07:20

Carrying On the ­Family Tradition – Bob Evans Seafood’s story continues — with a surprise turn

If you were Eliza or Lori Evans, daughters of renowned Maryland waterman and single father Bob Evans, waking in the pitch of night to go crabbing was par for the course. From the age of three or four, the sisters, two years apart, were all but destined to work in the seafood industry. Their part of the industry is Bob Evans Seafood, the family business since 1972, in Churchton since 1994. With customers from Virginia, D.C., Charles and Calvert counties, it is almost an institution in southern Anne Arundel County.,, In the yard are boats, skiffs, trailers, fishnets, eel pots, crab pots, a mess of five-gallon buckets, a frontend loader, a walk-in refrigerated box and several work trucks. >click to read< 19:57

Alaska Fishing Delegation Heads To Washington

Representatives of the Alaska Longline Fishermen’s Association and the Alaska Marine Conservation Council– both members of the nationalFishing Communities Coalition (FCC) – were in Washington, DC, this week urging lawmakers to resist shortsighted efforts to weaken fishing communities by undermining key Magnuson-Stevens Act accountability provisions.,,, “The MSA is working in Alaska and around the country because all sectors adhere to scientifically-sound annual catch limits. >click to read<09:54

Seismic Surveys Planned Off U.S. Coast Pose Risk To Marine Life

Animals that live in the ocean communicate with sound — humpback whales, for example. But these voices could soon be drowned out by powerful sonic booms from vessels searching for oil and gas. President Trump is opening up the Atlantic Coast to companies to explore for fresh reserves. And to explore, they will be making some of the loudest sounds ever heard in the ocean — sounds that, according to recent research, could harm marine animals from whales to plankton.  Five companies are currently applying for permits to use seismic air guns,,, >click to read< 14:18

Cuomo’s Curse: Wind Power Obsession Leaves New Yorkers with Rocketing Power Bills

If wind power really is cheap and getting cheaper all the time, why is it that every State or Nation ‘powered’ by the weather is suffering power prices magnitudes higher than those that continue merrily chugging away on coal, gas or nuclear power?.,,, Since 2015, Gov. Cuomo has been hyping his scheme to remake the state’s electric grid so that by 2030 half of the state’s electricity will come from renewable sources.,, To protect their interests, fishermen and fishmongers from New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island and Massachusetts have filed a federal lawsuit,,, >click to read< 09:02

Deepwater Wind Hires New Fisheries Liaison, Continues Search for Long Island Fishery Representative

Deepwater Wind’s new Fisheries LIaison, retired commercial fisherman Rodney Avila of New Bedford, Mass., will be on the East End all week meeting with potential independent fisheries representative candidates for the South Fork Wind Farm off of Montauk, while the East Hampton Town Trustees have issued a detailed set of requests for Community Benefit Projects they’d like to see Deepwater Wind fund on behalf of fisheries here. Deepwater Wind, the developers of the first U.S. offshore wind farm off Block Island, is planning to build,,, >click to read< 21:27

Letter: Save N.C. commercial fishermen

What is the REAL reason behind trying to limit the number of commercial fishing licenses? Did you know that a Commercial Fishing License, by itself, only allows the owner to catch and sell a recreational limit of finfish in N.C. waters? These seasonal limits are established by the Department of Marine Fisheries. A commercial fisherman cannot exceed the recreational limit without purchasing extra gear, permits and applying for endorsements from the state of North Carolina.,, We are being led to believe that those individuals who do not use their Commercial Fishing Licenses regularly … might be up to no good. >click to read< 09:36

North Carolina Fisheries Association Weekly Update for February 16, 2018

Click here to read the Weekly Update, to read all the updates Click here, for older updates listed as NCFA click here 14:23

North Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission approves new rules for fishing licenses – Critics angered by vote

By a 5-4 vote on Feb. 15, the North Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission (MFC) redefined the qualifications for a commercial fishing license with rules that did not include specific fishing income requirements, but did contain provisions that angered some critics. Before the two-day MFC meeting in Wrightsville Beach on Feb. 14 and 15, much of the criticism was focused on a proposal that to qualify as a “commercial fisherman,” an applicant must have 50% of all earned income from fishing and have three dozen trip tickets per year. >click to read< 12:43

Clam Dredging: A Rebuttal to ShoreRivers by Marc Castelli

I am responding to the op-ed on clam dredging by Mr. Horstman. A reply is necessary because there were many missing and mishandled facts, to the point that it was beyond opinion and became erroneously misleading, which is a concern.,, This is common in op-ed pieces: people set themselves up as an expert, but they aren’t.,, Why are simple facts about how the clam fishery interacts with the environment and natural resources so hard to find in the media? Is it because you, one of the Bay’s environmental “guardians” offer misinformed comments that will try to sway public opinion against clamming? Many of that industry’s best speakers are busy trying to make a living on the water and keep up with the pace of changes forced on it by outside pressures. Simply put they just do not have the time to respond to misleading op-ed pieces. I do. >click to read< 17:18 

Fishermen from across NC speak out against increased commercial fishing regulations

Proposed changes to North Carolina commercial fishing regulations could threaten jobs across the state, and the supply of seafood to the region. Nearly 100 people spoke out at an N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries meeting Wednesday night with most saying they are fearful for the future of their jobs and their families. Almost all were opposed to increased regulations on commercial fishing. They say the commission’s proposed requirements could take away their right to earn a living. >video, click to read< 15:15

Offshore drilling foes, denied microphone, hold rallies

With giant inflatable whales, signs that read “Drilling Is Killing” and chants of “Where’s our meeting?” opponents of President Donald Trump’s plan to open most of the nation’s coastline to oil and natural gas drilling have staged boisterous rallies before public meetings held by the federal government on the topic. That’s because the public cannot speak to the assembled attendees at the meetings. The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management is meeting one on one with interested parties and allows people to comment online, including typing comments on laptops it provides. People also can hand bureau officials written comments to be included in the record. What they can’t do is get up at a microphone and address the room. >click to read< 08:29

A Talk – Commercial Fishing Navigates Change to Bring Home Profit

A taste of the enthralling work of commercial fishing Saturday described a tug-of-war with not just the deep, but also a sea of federal regulations. How the captain and crew know where to set up the hooked lines for tuna, how the moon rules when fish bite, the extent that Big Brother’s eye is on the industry, the astounding amount that a scallop fishing permit is worth, what happens when one guy, days out to sea, gets a fever,,, Karter Larson’s talk on commercial fishing from Barnegat Light’s Viking Village dock is standing room only each year at the LBIF. >click to read< 21:39

Letter: CCA wants to kill competition

Many years ago I believed in the need for a Coastal Recreational Fishing License, and after reading the Coastal Conservation Association (CCA) mission statement written at that time, which included the benefits for ALL those involved in the coastal fisheries (recreational and commercial), I joined and became a lifetime member to help achieve the goal of a recreational saltwater fishing license. Over the years I have seen this association move more and more into just another political attack group. After spending three years on the Southern Flounder Advisory Council, I had seen enough. Doug Bolton >click to read<13:46:06

A key vote looms on commercial fishing in North Carolina

A high stakes meeting of the North Carolina Marine Fisheries Commission (MFC), set to begin today, includes a proposal that advocates say could devastate the state’s commercial fishing industry by redefining the requirements for a license.  “This can change the whole ball game,” said Dare Commissioner Steve House, who is planning to attend the meeting and speak out against the proposal. “They’re working to obliterate an industry and a whole way of life. And it’s not just a battle anymore — it’s all-out war. And I’m ready to fight it.”  >click to read< 08:30

Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council meeting in Raleigh, NC February 13 thru 15, 2018

The public is invited to attend the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council’s meeting in Raleigh, NC at the Hilton Garden Inn Raleigh/Crabtree Valley 3912 Arrow DriveRaleigh, NC, 27612 Briefing Materials & Agenda Overview Agenda >click here<  Attend Meeting with Adobe Connect >click here< Listen Live! www.mafmc.org 14:40

HR 200 – 24 Fishing Groups from Around the Nation Call for Magnuson-Stevens Act Reforms

Twenty-four members of Saving Seafood’s National Coalition for Fishing Communities (NCFC) are calling on Congress to enact broad reforms to the Magnuson-Stevens Act (MSA), including allowing for greater flexibility in how stocks are rebuilt and changes to how new management programs are implemented. The proposals, delivered in a letter to Alaska Senator Dan Sullivan, would, according to the signers, lead to a reauthorization that “allows for both sustainable fisheries management, and the long-term preservation of our nation’s fishing communities.” >click to read< 13:22 

Fundraiser: F/V Queen Ann’s Revenge – Please support my friend

Paul Matos was the owner of fishing boat Queen Ann’s Revenge. Sadly, his boat sank early Thursday morning. They sent out a call for help aroubd 1:20am, and that was the last time they were heard from. Debris has been found, but no bodies. The coast guard has called off the search as of this morning. Paul left behind my very good friend, Amy Romano, and their daughter, Stella. Any money raised would help towards whatever type of memorial the family would throw, plus it would take some stress off of Amy in this extremely hard time. >click to donate if you can<12:34

Point Pleasant Dad Was ‘Married’ To Ocean. That’s Where He Died.

Dennis Smalling was married to the ocean. And that’s where he went missing, and that’s where he’s lost. And that’s where a cross was erected to remember the fisherman whose likely death has a community in mourning. Even as his mom, and his 12-year-old daughter, still hope he comes home. The Point Pleasant native was only 34 when he and his shipmate, Paul Matos, 30, of Bayville, disappeared at sea last week. >click to read< 11:05

‘There’s no closure,’ say families of missing fishermen after search ends

In the year before he went missing in choppy waters 40 miles off the coast of Barnegat, Paul Alexandre Matos bought a house, had a daughter and got licensed to commercially fish on his own boat.  He had been working as a fisherman for other people, said his girlfriend, Amy Romano, but he decided last summer to strike out on his own.,, Alice Vannote, Dennis Smalling’s mother, on Saturday said she was still trying to process that the 34-year-old son who had lived with her in Point Pleasant is gone. >click to read< 10:19

Editorial: A callous agenda – defining who is a commercial fisherman

Once again defining who is a commercial fisherman in North Carolina is on the N.C. Marine Fisheries Commission’s agenda when it meets Wednesday and Thursday at the Blockade Runner in Wrightsville Beach.We say “once again” because as county resident Bill Hitchcock pointed out in a January letter to the editor, the definition “has been clearly defined since 1997 and thoroughly investigated, debated ad nauseam and determined to be properly defined by the commission back in October 2010.” >click to read< 08:57

Missing fishermen from N.J. presumed lost at sea, family says

Two New Jersey commercial fishermen are presumed lost at sea after their boat went missing early Thursday about 40 miles off the coast of New Jersey, according to a family member.,, “They went to where the signal is being emitted, but there is no visual of it,” Coast Guard Petty Officer Seth Johnson said Friday. The Coast Guard sent helicopters, planes and ships for the search. The two men had set out on a multi-day fishing trip on the 46-foot boat late Monday night from what’s locally known as “the clam dock” in Point Pleasant. >click to read< 09:12

Coast Guard suspends search for F/V Queen Ann’s Revenge off Barnegat, NJ.

The Coast Guard has suspended its search for the two-person crew of a fishing boat in distress approximately 40-miles off the coast of Barnegat, New Jersey, Friday. Coast Guard first responders searched 4,441 square-miles by sea and air for the crew of the Queen Ann’s Revenge since the search began shortly after 1:20 a.m., Thursday. >click to read< 21:16

North Carolina Fisheries Association Weekly Update for February 9, 2018

Click here to read the Weekly Update, to read all the updates Click here, 19:13

What the tags tell us: one fluke’s life reveals a lot

How long does it take a fluke to grow a 1/4 of an inch? The answer: about seven months. At least that was the data collected on a fluke that was tagged and released in Narragansett Bay last June and recaptured in January near the Hudson Canyon. The angler Daphne Forster released the fluke on June 15 about 4 ½ nautical miles south of Sakonnet Point, Rhode Island. The fish was then netted Jan. 24 by the Evening Star, a commercial dragger that was fishing in 300 to 400 feet of water. The Evening Star offloaded the fluke in Beaufort,,, >click to read< 09:23 

New fish house in Stumpy Point helps keeps a tradition alive

The commercial fishing village of Stumpy Point begins coming alive about 4:30 each morning when captains and crew members head from their homes to the harbor to start another day. Within an hour, a parade of boats head from the docks out into the Pamlico Sound or even offshore. Stumpy Point, first settled in the late 1700s, is 15 miles from the nearest gas station and mostly is confined to just one road that wraps around about a quarter of Stumpy Point Bay, which spills out into the Pamlico Sound.>click to read< 08:53

Desperate search continues 40 miles off coast as families of fishermen hold on to hope

The families and friends of two missing commercial fishermen are holding out hope that the two men will be found after their boat began taking on water and vanished early Thursday in international waters about 40 miles off the New Jersey coast. Paul Matos, 30, of Point Pleasant, and his crew member, Dennis Smallings, were aboard the 46-foot Queen Ann’s Revenge when one of the men sent out a distress signal at about 1:20 a.m. >click to read< 16:54