Daily Archives: December 6, 2023

A group of commercial fishermen have ended up before the Supreme Court

An unforgiving southeast wind cut across Cape May, New Jersey, on a recent Tuesday morning; the 50-mile-per-hour gusts were so strong they created white caps on a section of the bay here that is typically calm. There would be no fishing for Bill Bright and his crew. “We don’t have crop insurance. If the fish don’t show up, there’s no bailout,” the 64-year-old said, standing on the deck of the Eva Marie, an 88-foot-long fishing vessel used to catch herring. As a lifelong fisherman, Bright is used to slow days. But a recent shift in tidal fortunes here has nothing to do with fish and everything to do with the federal government. “What’s at stake for us is our future,” Bright said. For years, fishermen like Bill Bright and his colleague Wayne Reichle have been required to take federal observers on their boats when they set out into the North Atlantic in search of herring.  Video , >>click to read<< 19:06

MOU to Advance Wind Energy Cannot Be at Expense of Fishing Industry

December 6, 2023 – FFAW-Unifor is dismayed at today’s news from the provincial and federal governments announcing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at expediting the development of wind energy in Newfoundland and Labrador. The Union is calling for a clear commitment from the Provincial Government that priority will be given during the regulatory process to consult with affected industries, in particular the fishing industry, and asks for clarifications on other issues. “Previously, the jurisdiction of offshore and nearshore energy developments has been unclear, so today’s announcement does provide a clearer path for regulation. However, the Union is concerned that the MOU fails to clarify the government’s commitment to engage with primary ocean users and not rush through regulatory processes,” says FFAW-Unifor President Greg Pretty. more, >>click to read<< 16:30

Will SAFMC open oculina coral reef to shrimp trawling? Environmentalists oppose plan

Will an area of ocean bottom offshore of Florida’s Atlantic coast soon be reopened to shrimp fishers? That’s what’s expected to be decided Thursday during a meeting of the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council’s Habitat Protection and Ecosystem Based Management Committee. They will vote on a motion to open a 22-square-mile area of sea floor about 20 miles offshore of St. Lucie, Indian River and Brevard counties. The area is believed to be an area where rock shrimp, and several other varieties of shrimp, can be harvested for sale in Florida seafood markets and restaurants.  Commercial fishers say the area, closed to shrimp trawling since 2014, is ripe for productive fishing. Conservationists disagree, saying the area needs to remain closed to protect the slow-growing deepwater oculina coral from fishing practices that could harm the coral. more, >>click to read<< 14:25

In Massachusetts, the Never-Ending Fight over Herring Marches On

On a September day in 1805, Thomas Gifford lugged a cannon onto the village green in Falmouth, Massachusetts. The 27-year-old stuffed the barrel with herring and lit the fuse. Gifford planned to spew bloody bits of fish onto the green in an act of political protest. Instead, the cannon shattered, with mangled chunks of herring and shrapnel shredding Gifford’s body. It took him days to die. Gifford’s death was the culmination of a years-long conflict. The crux of Falmouth’s so-called Herring Wars never really went away. Even after Gifford accidentally dispatched himself, the owners of commercial endeavors, from fishers to cranberry farmers, have continued to clash with herring supporters across New England.  This long and tumultuous history got a new chapter in March 2022 when a federal judge overturned a decision by the New England Fishery Management Council. The agency had briefly banned midwater trawlers,,,  more, >>click to read<< 13:01

Athearn Marine Agency Boat of the Week: 92′ Rodriguez Scalloper/Shrimper

To review specifications, information, 35 photos’, and a video, >click here<, To see all the boats in this series, >click here<  10:50

Bay Port Fishing Company: A 128-year legacy in Huron County

For the last 128 years, the Bay Port Fishing Company has been on the mountaintop, withstood troubling times, and still provided fresh fish year-round to the residents of Huron County and beyond. The Bay Port Fishing Company was established in 1895 off the dock of Bay Port between Lake Huron and Saginaw Bay, by W.J. Orr and W.H. Wallace. During the early years, fisherman used sailboats to make runs, placing and tending their nets. During the winter months, they chopped holes through the ice to continue fishing and preserving the catches in salt and packed them up in kegs. Photos, more, >>click to read<< 10:12

Miss Trish II plans harbor protest of onerous fishing rules

Capt. Lenny Russo of the 96-foot dragger F/V Miss Trish II said he plans to protest peacefully in Gloucester Harbor on Wednesday afternoon over what he describes as onerous fishing regulations. He is inviting other fishermen to join him. His Gloucester attorney, Stephen Ouellette, said the captain “believes he’s being treated unfairly” by “overzealous law enforcement.”  Russo said he plans to head the Miss Trish II to Stacy Boulevard about 4 p.m. Wednesday, wave the American and the “Don’t Tread on Me” flags and protest what he said are unfair regulations. more, >>click to read<< 08:41

Tākaka fisherman who illegally removed monitoring device fined $20k, loses boat

A fisherman who removed essential position monitoring equipment from his boat and then tried to hide it in a bag beneath the sea has been convicted in a case that is the first of its kind in the country. Tony Peter Phillipson has also had his boat forfeited after breaching rules designed to help monitor and protect New Zealand fisheries. Judge Tony Zohrab said in the Nelson District Court today that little of what Phillipson had done made any sense, but his explanation at the time “smelled like fish left in the hold for a couple of weeks” and was in the realm of “gross dishonesty”.  more, >>click to read<< 07:15

Dec. 16 set for commercial Dungeness crab season opening

Oregon’s commercial Dungeness crab fishery opens Dec. 16 from Cape Foulweather, just south of Depoe Bay, to the California border, according to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW). Pre-season testing shows that crabs remain too low in meat yield to open commercial fishing from Cape Foulweather to the Washington border. The next round of crab meat yield and biotoxin testing will help determine if this area can open Dec. 31 or is further delayed. Oregon, California and Washington coordinate Dungeness crab quality testing and the commercial season opening dates. A history of Oregon’s commercial crab landings is available online. more, >>click to read<< 06:37