Monthly Archives: April 2024

Commercial fishing vessel runs aground in Hauraki Gulf, 27 on board

A commercial fishing vessel has run aground at The Noises, in the Hauraki Gulf. The Harbourmaster has confirmed the incident happened just before 3:45am. There are no reports of injury. The Police Eagle helicopter was at the scene. “There are 27 crew on board, and they are all safe. The Harbourmaster’s team is onsite at the moment and two tugboats are on the way to remove the vessel. More to come, >>click to read<< 17:27

Never mind the pollacks: ministerial direction signed for fishing scheme

Environmental secretary Steve Barclay has issued a ministerial direction authorising the creation of an aid package to help the South West fishing industry deal with restrictions on catching Pollack. The measures will see around 50 boat owners directly compensated because of a “zero” total-allowable-catch for the fish in Western Waters, called for by the International Council for the Exploration of the Seas. The advice, which is designed to ensure long-term security of pollack, means the fish cannot be directly targeted by crews. more, >>click to read<< 13:37

The meaning behind Ed Parker’s painting, The Lobster Trap – Thief of Tradition

In the painting The Lobster Trap by Ed Parker, a Maine lobsterman lowers crates into the water while, unbeknownst to him, a large sea monster intertwines itself with the line. The calm water and blue skies suggest a peaceful and idyllic day, juxtaposed with the strange creature just below the surface. “[The painting] is an image of the state of Maine,” said Parker in a telephone interview. “The culture is in as much jeopardy, I think, as the fishery itself. They’re so interlinked and younger people don’t see a lot of future in it.” more, >>click to read<< 11:19

Commercial Fisherman Riley Tavis Locker of Blaine, Washington has passed away

It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of Riley Tavis Locker. Riley was a cherished son, twin, brother, nephew, cousin, grandson and father. Born on April 2, 1993, he passed on March 14, 2024. Riley’s vibrant spirit and strength were evident from the beginning, when he entered the world ahead of his twin. Riley attended Ferndale High School, where he graduated in 2011. After graduation he discovered his passion for the water and thrived as a commercial fisherman, embodying a zest for life and a readiness for any adventure. Riley lived life on his own terms. more, >>click to read<< 10:01

Some Fishermen Blame California Water Policies for Salmon Season Closures

The Pacific Fishery Management Council unanimously recommended the closure of all California commercial and recreational ocean salmon fisheries through 2024, after a similar closure last year, blaming drought, climate and other factors for dwindling stocks. “While incredibly painful to fishing families and fishing communities, the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermens Associations supports the closure,” said George Bradshaw, president of PCFFA. “We all need to be doing everything we can to give Californias salmon a chance to recover. It has to be an all hands-on deck effort to ensure survival for our Central Valley and Klamath salmon runs.” Video, more, >>click to read<< 09:14

NCFA Weekly Update for April 15, 2024

Thank You. I want to thank everyone for coming out to the AC meetings last week. You filled the seats at every meeting and your comments and conversations before, during, and afterwards sent a loud and clear message! We all know the importance of SAV (submerged aquatic vegetation) but we also know these proposed trawl closure lines extend well beyond just protecting grass! NCFA knows these proposed trawling closures are not necessary and there is no supporting science that says closing these areas to shrimpers will restore grass beds. Save Our Shrimpers Act, inclusion in the Farm Bill, more, >>click to read the update<< 07:45

KZN High Court upholds appeal against seizure of commercial fishing vessel

In a dramatic turn of events, the KZN High Court upheld an appeal against the seizure of a commercial fishing vessel belonging to a well-known local commercial fisherman, Mr Naraina (Harris) Naidoo, who operates out of Rocky Bay. The Scottburgh Magistrates Court had on August 4, 2022, ordered that Mr Naidoo’s vessel, ‘Lee-Ann’, be forfeited to the state as part of a sentence relating to violations of the Marine Living Resources Act. Mr Naidoo was overjoyed with the court’s decision as he estimated that replacing his vessel would cost in the region of R1 million. more, >>click to read<< 06:50

BREAKING: FFAW AND ASP REACH AGREEMENT TO GET SNOW CRAB FISHERY STARTED

This evening, the Association of Seafood Producers (ASP) reached an agreement with the FFAW Snow Crab Bargaining Committee, ensuring the start of the 2024 snow crab fishery. As a result, plans for a demonstration tomorrow are now cancelled. “This is an historic pricing agreement for harvesters in our province, restoring fairness in the crab fishery and giving harvesters a sharing arrangement they have not seen in a long time. We’re very pleased about the progress made here today and thank Premier Furey for ensuring the fishery gets off the ground as quickly as possible for the benefit of all those involved,” says FFAW-Unifor President Greg Pretty. “I also want to extend my sincere thanks to all members of our Bargaining Committee, who stood strong throughout this process and ensured that harvesters in our province would not be shortchanged their fair share,” he says. more, >>click to read<< 18:09

Maine researchers, students are sorting through muck and slugs to study baby scallops

People from each of these groups are collaborating with the Maine Center for Coastal Fisheries, Hurricane Island Center for Science and Leadership and Colby College in the second year of a study meant to help identify how many young scallops there are off Maine’s coast, and where they’re living. The tiny, two-shelled juveniles, or spat, are uniquely important to fishermen who scoop wild scallops from the ocean floor and aquaculture farmers who raise them in contained areas. Unlike most aquaculture farmers who work with other species, scallop farmers can only grow their bounty from wild spat – the same spat that wild scallop fishermen need to feed the general population. Photos, more, >>click to read<< 12:50

Allowing Outside Buyers in Fishery Won’t Fix Issues in Processing Sector, Says Advocate

A longtime advocate for the inshore fishery says measures taken by the provincial government won’t do anything to break what he calls the “cartel” running the local processing sector. Harvesters are vowing to return to Confederation Building on Monday to rally for changes that will give them a greater share of the price fetched by crab and other species. The province is now allowing outside buyers to purchase product from harvesters, but Ryan Cleary told VOCM Open Line with Paddy Daly that doesn’t go far enough. more, >>click to read<< 10:44

Pioneering decarbonisation

Following his initial experience of the Pilothy project, a feasibility study into converting trawler Anita Conti to run on hydrogen, Loctudy trawler operator Julien Le Brun went back to naval architect Coprexma for another decarbonisation project. The 17.50-metre trawler L’Amour de la mer (ex-Magali) is to serve as a technological platform to test hybrid electric propulsion and equipment systems. The Startijenn Up project aims to demonstrate the effectiveness of existing decarbonisation options that can be integrated on board. The vessel will be outfitted with two Caterpillar generators, providing power to the electric propulsion motor, the electric winch motors and for on-board consumption. Depending on the requirement, consumption will be optimised by running on one or both groups. 100% electric mode can be used for part of the operations. more, >>click to read<< 09:20

Federal advisory group recommends curtailed Oregon ocean salmon fishing again; closing California season

Recommendations for the ocean salmon seasons off the coasts of Oregon, California and Washington were made last week with some OK news for some fishermen and devasting news for those in California. Once again. The Pacific Fishery Management Council — which oversees fishing along the West Coast — voted unanimously Wednesday to once again shut California’s commercial and recreational chinook salmon fisheries through the end of the year. Its recommendations are similar to those made in 2023, which was the first time such a closure occurred in 14 years. Oregon and Washington fared better – but still not very good. more, >>click to read<< 08:18

IS THE G.A.O. SLOWWALKING ITS INVESTIGATION OF OFFSHORE WIND IMPACTS? By Jim Lovgren

On June 15, 2023, Congressman Chris Smith issued a press release touting the acceptance by the General Accountability Office [GAO], of a request by the House Natural Resources Committee to investigate a wide range of issues related to the development of offshore wind. The Committee letter, signed by Chairman Bruce Westerman, was submitted on May 15 th , 2023, almost a year ago. I bring this up because the average time-length of most GAO investigations is three months. Which begs the question; Is the Biden administration “slow-walking” the GAO investigation? Slow-walking is the act of purposefully delaying action by stalling, stonewalling, making excuses of how hard it is to do, and other whiney efforts at delaying an investigation until it fails because it is too late. It is the bureaucrat’s favorite weapon of choice when forced to disclose vital information, that their politician benefactors don’t want exposed. more, >>click to read<< 06:10

NUTFA shuts down

The New Under Ten Fishermen’s Association (NUTFA), the only body dedicated to supporting small scale fishing in England and Wales, is to close down, according to director Jerry Percy. While it was always going to be a difficult decision to close, I’m not getting any younger and to be honest, I refuse to be party to what I see as the ongoing destruction of the under ten fleet,’ he said in a closing statement. ‘I think it is a tragedy that the 80% of the fleet that are under ten metres have been treated so shabbily by administrations going back decades that has in turn resulted in such a lack of fish on the inshore grounds, the almost complete lack of effective management especially in terms of effort, the deafening sound of cans being kicked down the road when exactly the opposite approach is needed, and the lip service paid to the under tens by other organisations.’Photos, more, >>click to read<< 19:35

Where Have All The Right Whales Gone?

Marine researchers have mapped the density of one of the most endangered large whale species worldwide, the North Atlantic right whale, using newly analyzed data to predict and help avoid whales’ harmful, even fatal, exposure to commercial fishing and vessel strikes. Duke University’s Marine Geospatial Ecology Lab led a collaboration of 11 institutions in the United States that pooled 17 years of available visual survey data covering 9.7 million square kilometers of the U.S. Atlantic – roughly the same area as the entire contiguous United States. more, >>click to read<< 16:37

Fishery council seeks more information before deciding on chum bycatch in Bering Sea pollock fishery

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council, which manages federal fisheries in Alaska, will continue to explore options for how to manage chum salmon bycatch in the Bering Sea pollock fishery. The council, facing rising pressure from western Alaska communities who depend on chum as a cornerstone of subsistence, released a statement Wednesday summarizing their decision from their April meeting. Dismal western Alaska salmon returns have reached crisis levels. And while the council listened to scores of harrowing testimonies recalling empty rivers and vacant fish camps, the council was also presented with research that suggested bycatch limits wouldn’t do much to help the crisis. “Available science indicates recent declines in chum salmon populations across many regions of the North Pacific, including Canada, Japan, Russia, Korea, and the U.S., appear to be driven by warmer water temperatures in both the marine and freshwater environments,” the council said in the statement. more, >>click to read<< 12:38

P.E.I. harbours face challenges with approach of lobster season

The spring lobster season on Prince Edward Island is just a few weeks away, but some harbours are facing challenges as Island fishermen prepare to head out and set their traps. At Malpeque Harbour, windy weather has slowed down efforts to clear the winding channel that they will take on setting day. “They’ve had a real hard time this year due to weather,” said fisherman Timothy Wall, who has been fishing for 30 years, following the occupation of his father and grandfather. “They’ve been on the site for two weeks already, and they can’t even get to the outside of the harbour, just the weather hasn’t been fit. Moving the harbour deeper into Malpeque Bay, where there is less moving sand, could be an option, said Wall, but there are no certain answers. Video, photos, more, >>click to read<< 11:12

A tribute to Herbert (Herbie) Jensen

Herb started commercial fishing at a young age with his Uncle Jerry Clock. From there he grew into his legacy as a Prince William Sound and Copper River Flats fisherman. When Herb was 18, he was drafted into the Vietnam War and spent 18 months on the front line until he was injured and sent back home. Shortly after he met Barb, they became friends and started dating when he was 21 and married her a year later. Together, over the course of 53 years they built a Copper River salmon cannery called Glacier Packing Co., and owned three gillnetters and three seine boats fishing the Copper River Flats, Prince William Sound, Kodiak, Togiak, and the Berring Sea until he retired in 2018. His happiest years were spent fishing with his family and crew who grew to be like family. more, >>click to read<< 09:02

Yukon River Panel hears fishing moratorium on Yukon River chinook may be ‘too little, too late’

A new international agreement on chinook salmon stoked at times emotional debate at the Yukon River Panel meeting in Anchorage, Alaska, this week, and while many appeared to approve of the pact, others seemed to cast doubts.  Duane Aucoin, a member of the Teslin Tlingit Council in the Yukon, said it’s taken the collapse of the chinook population to finally do something, but the natural world doesn’t work that way. “One thing we’re afraid of is, is this too little, too late?” he said. “Western policies, Western politics, Western science is what helped get us into this crisis, into this mess. Traditional knowledge will help get us out.” Photos, more, >>click to read<< 08:02

Historic Hastings fishing boat is removed from outside the station

The clinker built boat Dorothy Melinda had been on display on an island outside Hastings railway station for the past 15 years. It was the first thing visitors to Hastings see when they arrive in the town by rail. But Hastings Borough Council said the condition of the boat was seriously deteriorating and claimed it could become a potential hazard. In addition, the lease for the roundabout, which belongs to South Eastern Rail, had expired. She was due to be removed and demolished at the end of January, due to her deteriorating state, but local man Peter Carney launched a campaign to have her restored and put on display in Hastings old Town, setting up Go Fund Me appeal. Photos, more, >>click to read<< 07:00

Versatile Inshore Boat for the Basque Country Fleet

Although the general trend in the fishing sector in the Basque Country and the rest of Spain is to export or decommission, some owners from the town of Arminza, in the province of Vizcaya (north of Bilbao), decided to build a new vessel. Made of GRP, Beti Itsasoko has a 14-metre length and a beam of 5 metres, it has a number of features that set it apart from the boats with which it shares its fishing grounds. To begin with, it has an unusual modern design for Spanish waters, with an inverted bow, designed for more comfortable operation by minimising pounding as it cuts through the waves. On the other hand, the vessel measures 14,7gt and is configured to have two independent engines, which gives it greater maneuverability as each drives its own shaft, propellers and rudder. It also has a capacity for 8000 litres of fuel and a hold with space for almost 9 tonnes of fish in the chilled fishroom. Photos, more, >>click ti Read<< 16:66

Crab harvesters heading back to Confederation Building on Monday morning, Efford says

John Efford, the unofficial leader of a fisheries union protest that has gripped Newfoundland and Labrador’s seafood industry, says crab harvesters will be back to protesting on Monday morning. In a Facebook post on Thursday evening, Efford called on harvesters to meet outside Confederation Building at 7 a.m. NT on Monday to protest for a better deal to start the lucrative snow crab season, along with other demands. Efford called on harvesters from all over the province to head to St. John’s to begin protests. The main crux of the protest relates to the ongoing dispute over the crab season. The FFAW and the Association of Seafood Producers (ASP) have exchanged barbs in recent days, accusing each other of spreading misinformation. more, >>click to read<< 12:35

An ocean of ambition

One by one, a trustee listed the assets up for sale: eight commercial fishing vessels and 48 federal fishing permits. It was a fire-sale liquidation for bankrupt Blue Harvest Fisheries — one of New England’s largest seafood companies — and the largest bundle of groundfish permits in recent history to come available on the market. Bids, the trustee announced, would start at $10 million. Cassie Canastra was first to act: “$11 million,” she said, without skipping a beat.  There was a brief pause, as a team representing O’Hara Corporation, part owner of New Bedford-based scallop giant Eastern Fisheries, huddled to discuss their options. They raised the bid to $11.25 million. “$12 million,” Canastra responded, showing no sign of relenting. Photos, more, >>click to read<< 11:03

Higgins, Nehls Introduce the Save Our Shrimpers Act

Congressmen Clay Higgins (R-LA) and Troy Nehls (R-TX) introduced the Save Our Shrimpers Act of 2024, which would prohibit federal funds from being made available to International Financial Institutions (IFIs) that subsidize foreign activity relating to shrimp farming, shrimp processing, or the export of shrimp to the United States. Due to a rise in foreign seafood dumping and increased operational expenses, our nation’s domestic shrimpers are struggling to stay in business. Recent reports found that U.S. taxpayer dollars are being used to finance foreign shrimp farm operations through IFIs, such as the International Monetary Fund (IMF), contributing to the challenges facing the domestic shrimp industry. more, >>click to read<< 09:27

California’s ocean salmon fishing season closed for second year in a row

California’s commercial and recreational ocean salmon fishing season is set to be closed for the second consecutive year, another blow to the state’s beleaguered industry suffering from the combined fallout of drought, climate disruption and deteriorating ocean conditions. Already, a new request is underway for yet another federal disaster declaration to help alleviate some of the wide economic damage from the closure, affecting not just the fleet but many associated businesses that depend on the fishery, one of the state’s most lucrative. Many fishermen, already resigned to a severely limited season if any at all due to depleted stocks, had backed the full closure. “For nine months now, we’ll probably be without income. When you look at overall impact, it’s significant. Do we want the closure? Obviously, no. Is it necessary? Yes,” said Dick Ogg, a Bodega Bay commercial fisherman and president of the Bodega Bay Fishermen’s Marketing Association. Photos, more, >>click to read<< 07:43

ASP attempts to post price to break ranks, Commitee turns down offer that further erodes harvester share

Companies continue to spread misinformation in an effort to cause controversy and mistrust between fellow harvesters. “Today, ASP relayed a verbal offer via our Mediator and before our Committee was event able to convene, plants began to advise harvesters that a price had been set for them to go fishing. This is the equivalent of posting a price without a collective agreement. And it’s completely, unequivocally, unacceptable,” says FFAW-Unifor President Greg Pretty. “Harvesters are advised not to fish until an agreement is signed, and the only source that will come from is the Union’s official channels,” Pretty says. more, >>click to read<<  06:43

Accusing union of refusing all offers, ASP warns crab tie-up will soon have an economic whammy

Association of Seafood Producers executive director Jeff Loder says the current crab tie-up is getting to a point where it is going to negatively affect the market for the rest of the season — and other fisheries after that. It’s been nearly a week since the snow crab season was scheduled to begin. Fish harvesters have tied up their boats, however, refusing to fish under the pricing formula that an independent panel set just before the start of the season. Loder said it’s lining up to be a repeat of last season, in which harvesters tied up their boats for six weeks. “We are now reaching the point where [we] were to last year where there will be negative implications if the crab fishery does not start,” he told reporters Thursday. Video, more, >>click to read<< 17:43

OFFSHORE WIND AND WHALES – A collection of articles from fisherynation.com By Jim Lovgren

After over forty-five years as a commercial fisherman out of Point Pleasant NJ, I sold my boat the Shadowfax, and retired, moving to California. My experience as a fisherman began in the early 1970’s, and I observed and learned an encyclopedia of knowledge concerning fishing, the environment, and fishery management, including politics. As I observed the continuing massacre and the lies denying them by government and media puppets, I under took an effort to expose the truth concerning offshore wind. The following articles are listed in order of their appearance in Fisherynation.com, and are best understood by reading them in order. Just click on the title of an article you’d like to read. more, >>click to read<< 15:09

Growing Interest in Fishing for Crab

In The Netherlands there is a cautious but growing interest for crab fishing. Since January 2023 there are five vessels commercially fishing on North Sea crab (Cancer pagurus), all operating from northern ports such as Den Oever and Lauwersoog. In 2010 there was just one vessel fishing on North Sea crab. A year later another, Orion UK-163, made a start but finished within one year. In general, enthusiasm was quite low, but the last couple of years, as vessel owners seek to broaden operating patterns and to avoid restrictive measures, a few small-scale fishermen are showing interest. This is also because a number of Irish and English crabbers have been operating the German Bight above the Dutch Wadden islands for some years. Photos, more, >>click to read<< 13:51

Search ceased for missing fisherman Jason Hollows in Hawke’s Bay

The search for missing fisherman Jason Hollows has been officially suspended 10 days after he went overboard off the coast of Hawke’s Bay. There has been an extensive search for Hollows, a 54-year-old fisherman from Otago, since he went overboard on Easter Monday (April 1) about 11km off Waimārama. He was reported missing about 8pm that night. He had been onboard a fishing boat the Pacific Challenger. more, >>click to read<< 10:51