Daily Archives: February 9, 2023

Crab Fisherman Who Died Off Donegal Named

The fisherman who lost his life off the Donegal coast last weekend has been named. Madis Letsars (37), a father of two, went overboard the crab vessel, Séimí, while crab fishing about 70 miles north of Arranmore Island, Co Donegal, on February 4th. It is believed he may have got caught in a rope while the vessel was shooting pots. Originally from the Baltic States and living in Co Armagh, he was one of five on board the vessel at the time. Members of the crew of the Séimí are said to be devastated by the loss of the crewman who had been on four or five trips with the crab vessel. >click to read< 15:32

Snow crab prices down by nearly 60 per cent in U.S. market

The snow crab season in Atlantic Canada usually doesn’t get going until mid-April, but that doesn’t mean fresh snow crab is not already hitting the U.S. market. Alaskan fleets finished up their tanner crab season this week. That crab is often marketed under the name “snow crab,” being of similar size and colour. If the Alaskan tanner fishery is a portent of things to come, snow crab catches this year will have much less value than in 2022. The tanner fishery started Jan. 15 with wharf prices at US$3.25 to US$3.35 per pound, according to the latest blog from U.S. seafood analyst Les Hodges. The initial offer from processors was $2.50 a pound, but that offer prompted a strike by the crab fishing fleet, that prompted a bump in the offer from processors. >click to read< 14:04

County, community continues search for missing fisherman

After the U.S. Coast Guard suspended the official search for the missing fisherman from the Ethel May, a fishing vessel that capsized Sunday evening, local agencies and community members continued to scour Willapa Bay for signs of the lost man. On Facebook Tuesday morning, Pacific County Sheriff’s Office said it was searching for a man named Bryson Fitch. Fitch, 25, a longtime fisherman, husband and father of three young children, remained missing after the 46-foot crab boat Ethel May sank in heavy seas near Willapa Bay Sunday night. An extended search by the Coast Guard and state and local agencies was suspended Monday evening. “Please don’t stop searching. He is out there,” McKenzie Salas, Fitch’s wife, wrote on Facebook. “He is a fighter. Please keep looking. We need to bring him home. Anyone and everyone please.” >click to read< 12:34

A portrait of offshore wind companies

All of the prominent offshore wind companies originated in the oil and gas industry: Ørsted (Danish Oil and Natural Gas), Equinor (Norwegian Statoil), British Petroleum, Avangrid (Spanish Iberdrola gas), and Shell Oil (Dutch/UK). These past enemies of environmentalists, now dancing partners, continue to generate revenue from fossil fuels. Ørsted even profited from burning coal this past year. Given the industry’s history of misleading the public about climate change, it’s not unreasonable to question their assertions now. These companies lose money from offshore wind operations. However, backed by generous upfront government subsidies, the ongoing construction of wind farms compensates for these losses. Because federal subsidies will contribute 30% of the capital costs, taxpayers will pay these predominantly foreign-owned, for-profit companies, billions of dollars. Orsted predicts that South Fork Wind will cost $53 million per turbine. >click to read< 11:27

Commercial fishermen rail against Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion plan

Opponents of the state’s controversial plans to construct two large sediment diversions to rebuild coastal land used a Wednesday night public hearing to rail against the upcoming projects, warning of harm to commercial fishing in the area. Representatives of commercial oyster growers, fishers and a variety of community groups objected to plans for the Mid-Barataria Sediment Diversion, a more than $2 billion project set to begin construction later this year, as well as the upcoming $800-million east bank Mid-Breton Sediment Diversion. >click to read< 10:28

Urgent research to be undertaken on Bristol Bay Red King Crab

Urgent crab research will be getting underway in mid-March thanks to funds provided by both Alaska Department of Fish and Game and NOAA Fisheries, according to reports from Alaska Bering Sea Crabbers. The research is expected to use two chartered crab vessels with three scientists each, plus crew, to conduct research on Bristol Bay red king crab, including a pot survey, tagging, and gear studies. It will span roughly 25 days and begin in mid-March. The survey will set out to accomplish three main goals that may help inform management decisions in the future and will lay out important groundwork for future studies, >click to read< 08:31

‘People must know how serious fishing offences are’

A Spanish-owned trawler was allowed to leave Castletownbere this week after its owners paid a bond of €245,000 into court. Juan Pablo Docal Rubido (55), master of the German-registered Pesorsa Dos, was brought before a special sitting of Bandon District Court at the weekend following the detention of his vessel by the LE George Bernard Shaw for alleged fishing offences in Irish waters. Mr Rubido, with an address at Ciudad de Lugo 5, Third Floor, Coruna, Spain, was charged with 12 fishing offences on various dates between January 5th and January 24th while fishing within the exclusive fishing limits of the State. >click to read< 07:50