Daily Archives: May 23, 2023

MEDIA RELEASE: Crab Fishery Underway in Newfoundland and Labrador

With an agreement reached, the snow crab tie-up ended on Friday and a fishery is now underway in most areas of the province. The secured agreement is a formula structure that guarantees a lowest minimum price of 2.20 per pound with incremental increases as the Urner Barry market price increases. “To say we are no better off than when the Panel price came out is incorrect. The final offer selection process didn’t give harvesters a formula. But the Union did. Our members’ solidarity did. The value we’ve protected here is extremely important and cannot be overstated,” says FFAW-Unifor President Greg Pretty. >click to read< 19:39

Wildlife Troopers to crack down on ‘performance-enhancing’ add-ons to Bristol Bay boats

Commercial drift gillnet boats must measure 32 feet or less to fish in the bay. And the fleet got a finger-wagging from the Alaska Wildlife Troopers earlier this year — a reminder to keep their boats within that limit. Wildlife trooper Capt. Aaron Frenzel said they fielded more complaints than usual about big vessels last year. So after the season, they went over to boat yards in King Salmon and Naknek to see what was going on. “A lot of the stuff is below the waterline that we can’t see… while we’re out on the water inspecting vessels,” he said. “So we started seeing some areas that just kind of expanded.” >click to read<, 18:40

North Atlantic right whales causing ‘mess’ for P.E.I. lobster crews forced to move traps

Due to federal protocols, fishers had until Tuesday at 5 p.m. AT to move their gear out of waters deeper than 10 fathoms, about 18 metres, to protect the whales sighted late last week. The measure will last for 15 days, unless the whales are still in the area. Then the fishing area would be closed for at least another 15 days. “That’s not going to be good,” said Tony Clements, who fishes out of Northport. “We’re hoping for the best,” said David Henderson, who also moved 120 of his traps out of the closed zone. Out of 1,260 fishers, about 700 have already fully or partly converted to the whale-safe gear that will be mandatory by 2024. >click to read< 16:57

Snow crab producers, harvesters ready to move on from 6-week delay to start of season

“We have a shortened season, we have an increase in quota, and it’s very important that we keep our focus not on what has happened, but where we need to go,” ASP executive director Jeff Loder told reporters Tuesday. Loder did show slight frustration around the length of the holdout, saying both the price of $2.20 and the incremental increases were part of conversations months ago. Although the FFAW wasn’t able to change the $2.20 per pound set by the price-setting panel, President Greg Pretty says the work done in six weeks of holding out, like making sure $2.20 is the minimum price along with incremental increases, is a positive. >click to read< 15:06

Maine: Lobstermen support better science to help right whales

The historical record of Maine lobstermen is clear.One right whale entangled in 2004 was disentangled and swam free. No right whale death has ever been attributed to Maine lobster gear. Gov. Janet Mills and our congressional delegation, without partisanship, acknowledge Maine lobstermen are not a threat to the right whale population. Despite never having seen one in the 50 years I’ve fished; I’ve made multiple changes to make my gear more whale friendly. These changes have been time-consuming, expensive, and potentially dangerous to me and my crew but resulted in less rope in the water. >click to read< 11:52

Blessing of the Fleet honors those in local fishing industry

The annual Blessing of the Fleet and Memorial Service will be held at the Charleston Fisherman’s Memorial Garden on Memorial Day. The service honors the local men and women involved in commercial fishing and the fishing industry who have lost their lives since 1941. This year they will be honoring fishermen Stan Main and Chauncey Woodworth, and fishing industry professionals Kevin Roy Cameron and Fernando Sandez. The 1954 Buoy Bell will be rung as each name is read, which is significant because fishermen rely on this sound to aid in safe navigation. The Fisherman’s Memorial Committee members said everyone in the community is invited to participate in the event. “It’s a matter of showing appreciation to the fisherman and to honor them, and it’s a nice event that shows patriotism,” Whitmer said. photos, >click to read< 11:26

State charges Petersburg fishing guides with 54 violations

Four fishing guides at a Petersburg lodge are being charged by the State of Alaska with over 50 violations. The four men were working for Rocky Point Resort in 2019 and 2020. All of the charges are misdemeanors involving illegal fishing for halibut. Halibut is strictly regulated with a limited quota for commercial and sports fishermen, and the harvests must be documented. State and federal officers were involved in the investigations, including undercover officers posing as fishing clients. >click to read< 10:29

THE RECENT TIE-UP – Leadership and protecting Rural Communities – Ryan Everard

To me this tie-up was a lot more than fishing for $2.20 a pound. It was an opportunity to let our stories be told and our voices be heard. It’s about the overall state the industry is in, and it’s about all of us coming together and letting our voices finally be heard. No matter what fleet you are in, or if you wear an apron or oil skins, we need to all come together and remove the rules that are meant to divide us. When I look at the Inshore vs Offshore & Plant- Workers VS Crew members, I don’t see a big difference in any of us other than financially living in three separate worlds. I see families with nine Trap Bert draws vs one, and I see the wife’s, sons, and daughters that helped spread their fish. Just like it was a family affair for our forefathers, I believe it still a family affair for all of us. >click to read< 09:38

SNP MP urges locals to oppose marine protection plans

The proposals to restrict fishing and other human activities in some coastal areas are designed to protect wildlife and the environment. But fishing industry representatives, along with people in many communities in the Highlands and Islands, have raised concerns – as have several of the SNP’s own MSPs. Mr. O’Hara, an outspoken critic of his party’s plan to introduce HPMAs on the west coast, has urged his constituents to make their opinions known to the Scottish government by contacting his office directly to have their views collated and shared with Holyrood ministers. >click to read< 08:30

New Bedford Port Authority weighs in on fisheries mitigation for offshore wind

New Bedford Port Authority Executive Director Gordon Carr is calling for SouthCoast Wind to follow Vineyard Wind’s lead in support of local fisheries programs and projects. Vineyard Wind is closing in on construction of its wind farm. “Similar to Vineyard Wind, SouthCoast Wind has deployed a robust fisheries liaison program staffed by professionals that truly know the commercial fishing industry,” he said. The New Bedford Port Authority is a member of an advisory panel established by Vineyard Wind. “It is difficult to determine the areas most impacted given the many unknowns related to offshore wind effects on the ocean ecosystem and the fishery,” he said. >click to read< 07:39