Daily Archives: September 2, 2023

Harpswell fishing advocate battles winds of change

Harpswell resident Jerry Leeman III sits in an office chair at a dining room table with his father, Jerry Leeman Jr., on a nearby couch watching TV. In front of Leeman III is a laptop and a stack of studies and reports on a range of issues that could threaten the New England fishing industry. Leeman, like his father, used to be a commercial fisherman. Now he spends his days reading reports and constructing arguments against what he sees as challenges to the industry, while advocating for his fellow New England fishermen and their interests. Having recently harpooned the whale conservationists in court, the New England fishing industry’s current biggest threat, in Leeman’s view, is the advent of floating offshore wind power and its planned deployment along the New England coast. >>click to read<< 12:17

Shrimp Alliance request fisheries disaster declaration

There’s no other way to put it if you ask Aaron Wallace. Despite a decent catch by the eight shrimp boats that supply Anchored Shrimp Co. in Brunswick, the prices fishermen are getting for their hauls aren’t what they should be. “It’s been one of our toughest years,” Wallace said. He and his father, John Wallace, own Anchored Shrimp and operate the Gale Force, one of the boats that serve the company’s retail and wholesale business. The Southern Shrimp Alliance, for which John Wallace serves as a member of the board of directors, is calling the flood of imported shrimp a crisis. The alliance asked the governors of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas in a letter on Aug. 25 to collectively request a fisheries disaster determination by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce for the U.S. shrimp fishery. >>click to read<< 11:06

Statement from Fisheries and Oceans Canada regarding lobster fishing in St. Marys Bay, Nova Scotia

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) is committed to a renewed relationship with Indigenous peoples based on recognizing rights, respect, collaboration, and partnership. As part of that commitment, we are working with First Nations harvesters so that they can exercise their Supreme Court-affirmed Treaty right to fish through various DFO-authorized fisheries. These fisheries include food, social and ceremonial (FSC), and communal commercial fisheries, including interim understandings reached to fish in pursuit of a moderate livelihood. >>click to read<< 10:14

Idalia demolished some Florida fishing communities. But locals say they’ll rebuild

For five generations, Austin Ellison’s family has toiled in the shrimping and fishing business here in this picturesque shoreline community nestled in what’s known as Florida’s Nature Coast along the state’s northern Gulf Coast. But when Hurricane Idalia barreled into the coast as a Category 3 storm on Wednesday with 125 mph winds, his family business, Ed’s Bait House, was pounded to the ground. Ellison points to his shrimping boat, named Miss Laura, floating in a nearby canal. The storm smashed out its windows, but the vessel survived otherwise. To Ellison, rebuilding means not just the cost of construction, but the additional expense of meeting modern storm-proofing requirements — a daunting task for someone who makes less than $30,000 a year as a seasonal fisherman. Photos, >>click to read<< 09:37

Lobsterman Shane Matthew Sykes of Warren, Maine, has passed away

Shane Matthew Sykes, 33, of Warren, died after a brief illness on Aug. 9, 2023 at Pen Bay Medical Center. He was born in Bangor on June 16, 1990 to Gerald (Roy) and Cynthia (Hagar) Sykes. He was a lifetime resident of the Midcoast. Wherever he lived, he always called Bristol his home. Shane graduated from Lincoln Academy in 2008 and then became a full-time clamdigger. He was a hardworking man and later became a lobsterman. He looked forward to each day spent on the ocean, and often photographed the horizon in the early dawn hours. He also worked at Masters Machine Shop and was a cook at a few local restaurants. He always said he made an awesome steak, and he did. >>click to read<< 08:33

This board advises the state on offshore wind’s impacts on fisheries. They all just resigned.

All the members of the panel that advises state coastal regulators on the impacts of offshore wind on fisheries have resigned in protest of what they charge is a process that unfairly favors developers. A resignation letter signed by the nine members of the Fishermen’s Advisory Board was sent to the Coastal Resources Management Council Thursday night.  “It has become abundantly clear that the Rhode Island CRMC has made deference to offshore wind developers its top priority regardless of the requirements of the Ocean SAMP, the cost to the environment, or the impacts to Rhode Island’s fishing industry,” they wrote, referring to the Ocean Special Area Management Plan, the state document that guides offshore wind permitting. >>click to read<< 07:47