National Fisherman

ATLANTA -- A small, but determined effort is underway to convince Gov. Nathan Deal to veto legislation that would protect the red drum, or red fish, from commercial fishing.

However, a representative of the Coastal Conservation Association said Thursday its members are confident Deal will sign House Bill 36 into law. The measure, sponsored by Rep. Ben Watson, R-Savannah, prohibits commercial harvesting by declaring the species a game fish.

Robert Morrissey, known around Savannah as Capt. Bob, wrote Deal requesting a veto and urging the Department of Natural Resources to set a smaller daily limit instead.

"Gov. Deal, you can do more with one stroke of your pen to protect the redfish from overfishing," Morrissey wrote. "As chief executive officer for the state of Georgia, order the DNR to reduce the daily creel limit from five to three fish per day."

The Conservation Association pushed for the game-fish designation to preserve a fish that's popular with sportsmen for the way it fights when caught. The 1,800-member organization argues that the economic impact of tourism is greater than the few hundred pounds of fish sold commercially each year.

Read the full story at the Rome News Tribune>>

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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