National Fisherman

Mixed Catch 

jerryJerry Fraser is NF's publisher and former editor.



I played an interesting CD in my car yesterday. This is no small feat in the digital music age, where we’re more likely to plug in our phones and let the songs flow from our iTunes playlists.

So what would make me dust off my car’s CD player? Well, that would be a CD we received, entitled “Something Fishy.” It’s a compilation of poetry and spoken word pieces performed at New Bedford’s Working Waterfront Festival between 2006 and 2011.

The festival takes place on Fisherman’s Wharf/Pier 3 (the Steamship Pier) each fall on the last full weekend of September (that would be Saturday, Sept. 29 and Sunday, Sept. 30 this year). The CD’s liner notes describe the festival as a “family friendly, educational celebration of New England’s commercial fishing industry.”

That celebration includes a fisherpoetry session featuring performances by fishermen and other industry members. They share observations about the fishing life and their experiences.

Some of the pieces on the CD are funny, others more poignant. All of them are entertaining and well worth a listen, especially by those unfamiliar with the commercial fishing life. These 21 offerings present wonderful glimpses of what it’s like to live that life, and should provide listeners with a greater understanding of its joys and its pain.

All proceeds from the CD’s sales benefit the Working Waterfront Festival and its year-round programming. If you’d like to get your hands on a copy (it’ll cost you $15, shipped), visit the store on the festival’s website. You and your CD player will be glad you did.

Inside the Industry

NMFS recently released a draft action plan for fish discard and release mortality science, creating a list of actions that they hope can better inform fisheries.

We know that fishermen have to deal with bycatch by discarding or releasing unwanted catch overboard, but there is a data gap regarding how those fish survive.


A new study has identified a set of features common to all ocean ecosystems that provide a visual diagnosis of the health of the underwater environment coastal communities rely on.

Together, the features detail cumulative effects of threats -- such as overfishing, pollution, and invasive species,  allowing responders to act faster to increase ocean resiliency and sustainability.

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© 2015 Diversified Business Communications
Diversified Business Communications