Monthly Archives: May 2024

Rare ‘football fish’ washes up near Cannon Beach

A deep-sea angler fish, called a Pacific football fish (Himantoliphus sagamius) has been found by local beachcombers just south of Cannon Beach. Living in complete darkness, at 2,000 to 3,300 feet, these fish are rarely seen. In fact, only 31 specimens have been recorded around the world. While a handful of football fish have been recorded in New Zealand, Japan, Russia, Hawaii, Ecuador, Chile and California, this is the first one reported on the Oregon Coast to the knowledge of personnel at Seaside Aquarium, who announced the find. Photos, more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 10:38

EU candidates asked to meet fishing organisations

Candidates standing in the Midlands North West Constituency in the European Elections to be held on June 7, are invited to attend the launch of a pre-election campaign for change at EU level. Fishing and seafood organisations have come and they are asking MEPs to fight for the survival of their industry and for a fair share of EU fishing quotas. Aodh O Donnell of the Irish Fish Producers Organisation (IFPO) said they launched their #fight4fishing campaign on Wednesday and are urging the public to support it. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 08:07

9 crewmen rescued, search continues for 11 fishermen missing at sea in Cape Town

The South African Maritime Safety Authority’s (SAMSA) Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC), said they received a distress call notifying them of the fishing vessel FV Lepanto, reported to be rapidly sinking, west of Slangkop Lighthouse, at around 15:34 on Friday. “The distress call, received by Telkom Maritime Services, prompted an immediate response. Nearby fishing vessels, FV Harvest Mzansi and FV Armana, responded to the mayday call and proceeded to the scene,” said SAMSA’s Tebogo Ramatjie. Ramatjie added that the FV Armana had successfully rescued nine crew members, leaving 11 others still unaccounted for. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 06:32

Letter to the editor in rebuttal of “Anonymous”

Recently Fishery Nation published an opinion piece first published in Granitegrok.com entitled “Something Smells Like Rotten Fish”. I agree: the rotten fish is the anonymous author. My name is David Goethel, and I am a semi-retired commercial fisherman with over fifty five years’
experience and author of the book Endangered Species about my life as a small boat fishermen in New Hampshire. I am also a dues paying member of the New Hampshire Commercial Fishermen’s Association. The author states Erik Anderson supports offshore wind and selectively quotes from the electronic newsletter to support his belief. Nothing could be further from the truth and reading anonymous’ comments I feel like I am in a “through the looking glass” moment. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 17:44

Maine DOT seeks $456 million federal grant to help fund wind port on Sears Island

The Dirigo Atlantic Floating Offshore Wind Port Project. The Maine Department of Transportation said May 17 that it has applied for $456 million in grant funding from the federal government to help construct the East Coast’s first floating offshore wind port on a portion of state-owned Sears Island that is reserved for port development. “Maine has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to help transform our economy, protect our environment, create good-paying jobs, and support the generation of clean, affordable, reliable energy for Maine and the region,” said Bruce Van Note, Commissioner of the Maine Department of Transportation, in a news release. “At the direction of Governor Mills, we will work collaboratively across the Administration to bring every federal dollar available to Maine to help us seize this opportunity for our people, our environment, and our future.” more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 11:33

Filipino settlers introduced Louisiana to dried shrimp

In Lake Borgne off the coast of St. Bernard Parish, 18th century settlers performed the “Shrimp Dance,” which introduced Louisiana to dried shrimp. Filipinos, the first Asian settlers in the United States, established a marshland community called St. Malo. The community existed as early as 1763 when Louisiana and the Philippines were ruled by the Spanish government in Mexico, according to the History Channel. The hot, sticky climate and mosquitos reminded the Manilamen – as they were called – of their native land. The Filipino settlers are credited with revolutionizing the fishing and shrimp industries. Their Shrimp Dance, for instance, preserved shellfish before there were refrigerators. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 10:04

Fisherman ‘sold down the river’ by Brexit

A Cornish fisherman who voted for Brexit said the fleet had been “sold down the river” because foreign boats were still fishing near the coast. Cornish MP Steve Double raised the issue in parliament this week saying the under-10m (33ft) fleet was “sadly in decline” and had been losing more than 100 vessels each year. Martin Gilbert, who fishes mainly for shellfish out of Newquay harbour and voted for Brexit but said the current deal had “sold us down the river”. “The French, the Belgians and the Spanish have still got the majority of the quota,” he said. “We have to go past the French to fish in our own waters and it’s not right.” more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 08:42

Tidal Vision, a startup turning crab shells into a green industrial chemical, is raising fresh cash

Tidal Vision, a green chemistry company founded by a former Alaska fishing boat captain, is raising more investment to fuel growth. A new SEC filing reveals $46.7 million in fresh cash. We reached out to the company for comment on the filing. Tidal Vision uses an environmentally friendly, zero-waste process to turn discarded crab shells into a valuable industrial chemical called chitosan. The material is something of a wonder ingredient and can be used in water purification, to preserve produce, to promote plant growth, as a flame retardant in fabrics, and in pharmaceuticals and cosmetics. It offers a safe alternative to toxic chemicals, metals, petroleum products and pesticides used in industry. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 07:30

Ropeless gear program will keep P.E.I. snow crab harvester on water despite whale sightings

Alden Gaudet fishes snow crab out of Tignish Run and is close to reaching his quota for the season. The first sighting of a right whale in Canadian waters in 2024 came last Friday. A whale that has been dubbed Shelagh was seen northeast of New Brunswick and northwest of the Magdalen Islands.  After that led to a partial closure of fishing grounds near his traps, Gaudet reached out to CanFish, a free gear-lending program based in Halifax that’s operated by the Canadian Wildlife Federation. Photos, more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 17:36

Something Smells like Rotten Fish in NH

Commercial fishermen are scratching their heads over the direction in which Erik Anderson, the president of the New Hampshire Commercial Fishermen’s Association (NHCFA), is taking their supposed organization. There is not one commercial or sport fisherman that supports offshore wind (OSW) in the Gulf of Maine except Eric Anderson. The construction and operation of these monsters have affected marine life, from the largest endangered whale to the smallest crustaceans. In a recent post, Mr. Anderson sent his members, he quotes, “It’s finally taking shape,” referring to the upcoming BOEM meetings and pending OSW in the Gulf of Maine. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 14:32

Lawmakers pass sweeping changes for foreign seafood sold at Louisiana restaurants

In an effort to protect Louisiana’s struggling domestic seafood industry, state lawmakers on Wednesday passed sweeping changes to public health codes that will affect thousands of restaurants, food trucks, grocery stores and other establishments across the state. They also include every state agency and school district that serves food. Senate Bill 166, sponsored by Sen. Patrick Connick, R-Marrero, received final passage with overwhelming bipartisan support from both chambers. It is now headed to the office of Gov. Jeff Landry, who is expected to sign it into law.  The proposal includes a variety of changes to strengthen the state’s seafood labeling laws with new prohibitions against misleading marketing and new requirements for restaurants and other eateries that serve shrimp and crawfish. The new laws will carry heavier fines for violators and assign new enforcement powers and duties to the Louisiana Department of Health and state Department of Agriculture and Forestry. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 11:34

Boatbuilder: Frank Luke

Over one hundred vessels have slid down the ways into Linekin Bay out of Paul E. Luke, Inc. boat yard: lobster boats, power cruisers, sailboats (race and cruising) both wood and aluminum. There is only one boatbuilder in this boatyard. Make no mistake whose yard it was, and who was boss. He was Paul Luke. Others worked here and moved on to become boat builders in their own yard: John Luke, Jim Jones, Matt Sledge, and others moved on and became successful builders in their own yard, but they passed through here. In the early days, I was happy to come down to the yard, as it was full of friends and had a lot of energy in the air. There was always a lot going on … Never long after I arrived, either a broom or a shovel was pushed in my direction. I always knew where I wanted to work, the question was, “Where will I fit in?” more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 09:25

Andy Harris, Ocean City mayor voice new opposition to West OC pier plan

Wednesday, Rep. Andy Harris, R-Md-1st, Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan and Maryland lawmakers from the Eastern Shore delegation called on the Maryland Department of Environment to hold a public hearing in Ocean City to review its process for U.S. Wind’s planned pier in West Ocean City. The department already held a public comment hearing at the Wor-Wic Community College on March 25, but Harris and others are calling for another following “numerous complaints” received by his office that the hearing was held in Wicomico County as opposed to Ocean City where residents will be most affected by the pier development. “The West Ocean City pier is being developed with the purpose of expanding offshore wind at a time when the true impacts of offshore wind have never been properly studied,” Harris wrote. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 07:57

RCMP Officers find 1.5kg of elvers while arresting man passed out behind the wheel of his truck

An Indian Brook, N.S. man is facing charges after police say he was found impaired by drugs behind the wheel of a car in Concession, N.S., Thursday morning. According to an RCMP news release, officers and emergency responders found the man unconscious in a black Dodge Ram around 6:48 a.m. According to police, he drifted in and out of consciousness and allegedly showed signs of impairment. The man was arrested and taken to the Yarmouth RCMP Detachment, where police say he failed a sobriety test. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 07:10

Talks underway in bid to keep Plymouth fish market open

Talks are underway in a bid to keep the city’s fish market operating after Plymouth Trawler Agents ceases trading after tomorrow. Sutton Harbour Group Plc (SHG), which owns the quayside market, said it has begun discussions with potential operators. Meanwhile, alternative arrangements are being made for fishing boats to sell their catch elsewhere after the closure of Plymouth Trawler Agent Ltd (PTA), which runs fish auctions at Sutton Harbour. One insider described this as “crisis management” and Plymouth City Council spoke of its “shock” to hear PTA was wrapping up after nearly 30 years and called it “the end of an era”. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 12:40

Season’s 1st North Atlantic right whale sighting is bracing P.E.I. fishers for the next one

The 2023 lobster fishing season was just three weeks old when two endangered right whales were spotted to the east of Western P.E.I. For the first time ever, the Department of Fisheries and Oceans shut that section of Lobster Fishing Area 24, meaning lobster crews had to move their traps to shallower waters until the whales left, rather than risk them becoming entangled in fishing gear. Nearly one year later, a marine biologist says P.E.I. fishers are reflecting on the lessons they learned, after an entangled right whale was spotted on Friday northeast of New Brunswick, prompting fishing closures in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 10:35

Fishermen Join Fight for Herring Trawler Rules

The marine ecosystem around Cape Cod is built on the backs of Atlantic herring. These baitfish school in massive numbers, providing food for marine mammals, seabirds, and large fish like cod. Their eggs, which they lay in the fall and are dense enough in spots to carpet the ocean floor, are food for crabs and other bottom-dwelling animals. They are also a $4.5-million fishery, used as bait for lobster traps, turned into canned sardines, and sold, frozen or salted, overseas. But with the Atlantic herring population in a steep decline, and the most recent attempt at a rule to protect the fish thwarted, Cape Cod fishermen are advocating for new ways to protect the species. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 09:21

Whitby Fishing School calls for fishermen of future to apply for next intake of maritime courses

Whitby Fishing School is calling for the young fishermen of tomorrow to take a first step towards an “exciting and rewarding” career in the fishing industry. The fishing school, based at The Mission to Seafarers building on Haggersgate, offers a variety of maritime courses aimed at preparing individuals for a career in the fishing industry. With courses ranging from Basic Sea Survival and First Aid to Skippers qualifications, the school provides a comprehensive education for students of all ages. This course is fully funded, to include training, PPE, and food/accommodation where living away from home. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 08:29

Unsealed federal lawsuit alleges Omega Protein skirted U.S. citizen ownership requirement

A recently unsealed federal lawsuit alleges that the lone menhaden reduction fishery in the Chesapeake Bay broke federal law by creating a shell company to cover-up its foreign ownership, routing profits to a Canadian company instead of keeping them in Virginia. Benson Chiles and Chris Manthey, two private investigators involved in environmental conservation efforts, brought forward the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in 2021 against Omega Protein under the False Claims Act, saying the company violated the Jones Act and American Fisheries Act by not disclosing that its owners are family. Ocean Harvesters, the subsidiary more specifically accused of wrongdoing, said in a statement the lawsuit is “without merit” and will be “vigorously” defended. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 06:48

Conne River salmon on the road to extinction, says DFO study, with aquaculture a leading factor

A new comprehensive review of Atlantic salmon in Conne River, on Newfoundland’s south coast, says aquaculture operations are the biggest reason for the population decline — and if things don’t change, the fish could be wiped out. Travis Van Leeuwen, a Department of Fisheries and Oceans research scientist and co-author of the report, released in April, says the river had at least 10,000 large and small salmon, but since 2020 fewer than 300 adult salmon return to Conne River every year. Marine cage culture salmonids started in the mid-1980s at Bay d’Espoir and later expanded east into Fortune Bay. In 1992, Newfoundland and Labrador’s commercial salmon fishery ended. But while the salmon population in rivers in other areas of the province bounced back, Conne River’s continued to decline. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 16:49

Man accuses Westbank Fishing, LLC of negligence leading to serious injuries

In the United States District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana, Timothy Milne has filed a civil action against Westbank Fishing, LLC. The lawsuit, case number 2:24-cv-01179-BWA-JVM, was filed on May 9th, 2024. The complaint alleges negligence and unseaworthiness on the part of Westbank Fishing, leading to serious personal injuries. Milne claims that while employed as a second engineer onboard the F/V Mary Virginia on May 14th, 2023, he slipped and fell in a substance believed to be grease, oil or hydraulic fluid. This incident resulted in multiple injuries including damages to his lower back and right wrist. Westbank Fishing is accused of failing to provide a safe working environment and a seaworthy vessel. more, CLICK TO READ<< 11:44

Indigenous harvesters call for independent review of Nunatsiavut government shrimp allocations; conflict of interest questions raised

A group of seven indigenous inshore harvesters from northern Labrador say the Nunatsiavut government has denied them a 2024 share of northern shrimp quota in favour of a factory-freezer trawler and are calling for an independent investigation. “This is an injustice that goes against the spirit of our communal licence to preserve the culture and economy of the North Coast,” says Lisa Blandford, an Indigenous harvester on behalf the group. In past years the Nunatsiavut government has distributed its annual federal allocation of shrimp off northern Labrador to more than 20 inshore harvesters or “designates.” This year, however, Blandford said seven inshore designates have been told they will not be awarded northern shrimp. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 10:24

Full investigation into fatal explosion aboard fishing trawler launched

Oceana Group Limited said the fatal explosion aboard one of its fishing trawlers docked near Amawandle Hake in Table Bay Harbour will be fully investigated. Contractors were busy with repairs on board the vessel, identified as the Realeka, at around 5pm on Monday when a nitrogen tank exploded. Five men who were injured in the explosion were transported to a nearby hospital for medical attention, while a 49-year-old man was declared dead at the site. Emergency personnel combed the scene for several hours on Monday night while ventilating the engine room of refrigeration gas, which could be an ammonia-containing combination. A hazmat technician was also present while gas detection meters were requested. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 09:26

Athearn Marine Agency Boat of the Week: 54′ Steel Lobster/Scalloper/Longliner

To review specifications, information, and 35 photos’, >click here<, To see all the boats in this series, >click here< 08:07

Fisherman Settles Landmark Case with Offshore Wind Developer

Co Wicklow fisherman Ivan Toole has reached a significant settlement with German wind farm group RWE regarding its offshore project according to a report from The Sunday Times. Toole initiated a judicial review last May on environmental grounds against the minister of state with responsibility for planning and local government following the issuance of a foreshore license to RWE. This license granted RWE the authority to conduct a survey off the coast of Wicklow in preparation for a proposed €1.5 billion offshore wind farm. The legal battle, which involved the High Court referring several questions to the Court of Justice of the European Union, has now concluded with a settlement between Toole and RWE. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 07:12

Coast Guard, other agencies respond to sunken vessel in Seattle

The Coast Guard, Washington Department of Ecology and other agencies are responding to a vessel that sank at a pier in Seattle, Tuesday. Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound received a report at approximately 7:30 a.m. that the 91-foot crabbing vessel F/V North American had sunk at a pier east of the Ballard Bridge on the south side of the Lake Washington Ship Canal. To view 5 images, >>CLICK HERE<< 17:55

Lennox Island First Nation hoping for more access to lobster fishery

The Lennox Island First Nation wharf is busy these days, in the band’s third year of treaty fishing for lobster, but Chief Darlene Bernard would like to see it busier.  Though there has been a commercial fishery based in the community off P.E.I’s North Shore for decades, Bernard said the newly exercised right to harvest lobster under treaties signed long ago means about 10 young families are better able to pay their bills.  With a waiting list of about the same number of people who would like to take part in the fishery, Bernard wants to see more commercial licences made available for Lennox Island through a Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) purchase program.  “We need to have an equitable share of the bounty of the resources in this province moving forward,” she said. Video, photos, more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 13:20

Sunken fishing vessel raised, fuel offloaded at Henry island

The 48-foot commercial fishing boat, called Chief Joseph, went down on May 3 after taking on water west of Henry Island, just over the U.S. border about five kilometres from Sidney Island. A man and a dog were rescued from a life raft on shore by the U.S. Coast Guard at about 6 p.m. A U.S. Coast Guard helicopter aircrew conducted a flight over the area and reported a 90-metre sheen on the water and a debris field from the sunken vessel. Absorbent booms were laid to capture most of the fuels. Salvage operations got underway last week with divers from Global Diving and Salvage using a pump truck on board a barge to retrieve about 1,900 litres of diesel fuel from the Chief Joseph’s tanks. 3 Photos, more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 09:53

Offshore Wind Cumulative Impact Issue Analysis

When the Feds finally do the cumulative environmental impact analysis for whales as mandated by the Endangered Species Act there are a number of basic issues to be resolved. Here is a quick look at some for the desperately endangered North Atlantic Right Whale (NARW). Cumulative refers to the combined impact of multiple offshore projects. The first issue is which projects to combine for analysis. NARW are found along the entire Atlantic coastal waters which bounds the geography. Other endangered critters are found along the Gulf and West Coasts. Projects can be in very different stages of development. Here is a hierarchy of sorts that gives several obvious options, from relatively small to enormous. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 09:07

Maine to spend $25 million to rebuild waterfront after devastating winter storms and flooding

Maine’s government will spend tens of millions of dollars to rebuild the state’s working waterfront communities after a series of devastating winter storms pummeled the state’s docks, wharves and coastal businesses. The back-to-back storms hammered the Northeast in January and hit Maine and New Hampshire especially hard, bringing flooding and heavy damage to dozens of businesses. State officials in Maine said the storms, which were later declared a “major disaster” by President Joe Biden, caused about $70 million in damage in the state. more, >>CLICK TO READ<< 08:06