National Fisherman

The Rudderpost 

jesJes Hathaway is the editor in chief of National Fisherman magazine and


Blogpic It should come as no surprise that one of the first questions out of people's mouths after the Deepwater Horizon explosion and consequential oil spill is, "What's going to happen to the offshore drilling plan?"

I've heard a lot of folks pronounce this spill as the death knell to Obama's plan, but I find that hard to believe.
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JHathaway2 I almost fell off my chair laughing this morning while reading Chris Horton's latest musings about NOAA on ESPN.

Among my favorite quotes was this little jewel, "The agency's focus has always seemed biased toward the commercial fishing sector, while recreational anglers get the crumbs."

Commercial fishermen are feeding families besides their own. They are not out there for sport, but to make a living. Shouldn't they come first when allocating the catch?
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Yesterday, officials in Maryland and Virginia announced a second straight year of crab population increases in the Chesapeake Bay.

It's great news for baymen and blue crab lovers, alike.

I have to hand it to the local governments on Chesapeake Bay. While the crab restrictions have been extremely tough on crabbers, the fact that the fishery is on a major rebound speaks well to the management. And in the meantime, Virginia has kept baymen working by removing marine debris.
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Blogpic I find it quite curious that when it comes to the practices of American fishermen, we tend to get on a high horse (and rightfully so) about doing everything just right: the best gear that ensures the least bycatch (including, in the case of shrimpers, turtle interactions), leaving enough of the biomass to ensure the long-term survival of the species and bringing the catch to market when the processors and consumers want it the most.

All these factors often add up to high costs for fishermen, which they pass on in the form of dock price, as the market will bear.
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California's San Joaquin Valley water battle heated up this week when fishermen and politicians gathered Thursday at the Salmon Summit in San Francisco to urge a change in Central Valley water policy.

It seems like it might take a full-on blaze to convince locals and politicians to find a solution to the region's water problem.
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For those of you overdosing on butter, flour, sugar and all the other delicious ingredients Christmas treats have to offer, I thought I'd suggest a recovery meal of sorts.

This quick and easy tuna niçoise is made with oil-packed canned tuna. I remember when all tuna came this way, and now it's making a comeback to regular grocery shelves.

I use:

Green leaf lettuce
Grape tomatoes
Pickling cucumbers
Boiled eggs
Red potatoes, steamed
Haricots vert, steamed and chilled (regular green beans will do, but these skinny French beans are worth it if you can find them)
Artichoke hearts, quartered (I like the cans from Goya, not marinated)
Italian or Greek olives (whatever you prefer)
Newman's Own balsamic vinaigrette (I also like a zesty Italian)
Tuna packed in olive oil


Serve with a crusty bread if you must, but this meal is hearty and satisfying, especially after days of overindulging!

Merry Christmas!

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As many of you may have seen on our home page and in our news updates this week, February brings an opportunity to count your voice and face among many other fishermen in a march on Washington.

Though the original release posted an earlier date, the protest is now scheduled for Feb. 24, which prevents it from falling during Congressional recess.
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Organizers of London's 2012 Olympic Games announced this week that they will stick to "demonstrably sustainable" seafood when feeding more than 23,000 athletes and officials during the games.

The host country will include Marine Stewardship Council certification and Marine Conservation Society standards when choosing approximately 90 tons of seafood for what they claim will be a diverse menu — including some farmed species.
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As I mentioned a few weeks ago in another Sorting Table entry, things are looking up for the Gulf of Mexico red snapper fishery.

NMFS officials announced this week at the council meeting in New Orleans that overfishing has ended prior to the 2010 deadline. Though the season may remain curtailed at 75 days, the 2010 total allowable catch — to be split between commercial and recreational fishermen, at 51 and 49 percent, respectively — is 6.9 million pounds, up from 5 million this year.
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JHathaway2 I keep hearing today (the Wednesday before Thanksgiving) referred to as national getaway day.

It's also a day for last-minute food shopping.
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Page 28 of 35

Inside the Industry

NMFS has awarded 16 grants totaling more than $2.5 million as part of its Bycatch Reduction Engineering Program.

The program supports the development of technological solutions and changes in fishing practices designed to minimize bycatch and aims to to find creative approaches and strategies for reducing bycatch, seabird interactions, and post-release mortality in federally managed fisheries.


Abe Williams, who was elected to the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association board last spring, has been selected as the new president as of September.

Williams fishes the F/V Crimson Fury, and is president of Nuna Resources, a nonprofit that supports sustainable resource development in rural Alaska, including fighting for an international solution to issues raised by the proposed Pebble Mine project.

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