National Fisherman


Mixed Catch 

jerryJerry Fraser is NF's publisher and former editor.

 

 

I'm guessing that if you ask fishermen, "What's wrong with U.S. fisheries management?" you'll get back a laundry list of suggestions.

For example, some might argue that stock assessments are, um, debatable (Hi, there, Gulf of Mexico grouper fishermen!). Others might challenge the idea that the answer to bolstering the nation's fish stocks is thinning (Whoops! I mean "rationalizing") the herd of U.S. fishermen.

Nope. I know exactly what's wrong with our system of fisheries management.

It's the fish.

Yup. Let's not dance around it anymore. The fish are the ones gumming up the works.

Here we have one spiffy 10-year timetable for rebuilding U.S. fish stocks, courtesy of the re-authorized Magnuson-Stevens Act. Yet, we have some species (and you know who you are) that are totally ignoring this timetable!

Sure, it's fine for Northeast cod and West Coast salmon stocks to take their sweet time building up their numbers. But — hello? — fishermen still have boat payments to make!

You, summer flounder! Think you're doing a good job of rebuilding? Wrong! You're still a long ways off from the spawning stock biomass number you're supposed to hit. Think the target is outrageously high? Too bad. Time to get busy gettin' busy, know what I'm sayin'?

Look, we're 21st century Americans; we don't do waiting. We stand impatiently in front of the microwave, grumbling about how long it's taking to nuke our food. So all you little finned, gill-breathing critters better stop whining about how unreasonable and arbitrary the 10-year rebuilding deadline is. Just suck it up and get with the program already, will you?

Inside the Industry

The American Fisheries Society is honoring recently retired Florida Institute of Oceanography director Bill Hogarth with the Carl R. Sullivan Fishery Conservation Award — one of the nation's premier awards in fisheries science - in recognition of his long career and leadership in preserving some of the world's most threatened species, advocating for environmental protections and leading Florida's scientific response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Read more...

The Marine Stewardship Council has appointed Eric Critchlow as the new U.S. Program Director. Critchlow will be based in the MSC US headquarters in Seattle. He is a former vice president of Lusamerica Foods and has over 35 years in the seafood industry.

Read more...
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