National Fisherman


Mixed Catch 

jerryJerry Fraser is NF's publisher and former editor.

 

 

Top 5 Mixed Catch Stories

It's hard to assess what's going on with the Gulf of Mexico oil spill because the news seems to change so quickly.

Thursday afternoon we were momentarily buoyed by the news that BP's "top kill" method of plugging the sunken Deepwater Horizon well by slowly pumping in mud was working. Then a couple of hours later, we were hearing reports that maybe it wasn't working so well after all.

It's also difficult just to know how much oil is spewing from the well. One look at the Gulf Leak Meter widget on the NF home page will confirm that. As of Friday, May 28, estimates of the rate that oil is gushing into gulf waters daily range from the U.S. Geological Survey's calculation of 504,000 gallons a day to outside estimates of 1,050,000 gallons — and those aren't even the worst-case-scenario predictions.

BP's worst-case scenario figure is 2.52 million gallons a day. Other experts' worst-case total is 4.2 million gallons each day.

It'd be nice to say on the verge of this holiday weekend that there's a light at the end of the tunnel for the gulf region's fishermen, but even six weeks into this nightmare it's just too early to tell. Plus, NOAA announced this week that the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season that begins June 1 is expected to be an "active to extremely active" one.

Let's try not to think about what happens if a hurricane blows through the gulf region and further stirs up waters already befouled by oil from the Deepwater Horizon well.

Inside the Industry

The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:

The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.

Read more...

Louisiana’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, which governs commercial and recreational fishing in the state, got a new boss in January. Charlie Melancon, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives and state legislator, was appointed to the job by the state’s new governor, John Bel Edwards.

Although much of his non-political work in the past has centered on the state’s sugar cane industry, Melancon said he is confident that other experience, including working closely with fishermen when in Congress, has prepared him well for this new challenge.

Read more...
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