National Fisherman

Two York County oyster farmers' years-long battle to continue to commercially farm and harvest oysters at their homes without a special-use permit persists, as the county looks to the Virginia Supreme Court to appeal the October decision from the York-Poquoson Circuit Court.

On Wednesday, the state's supreme court accepted a pair of petitions filed on behalf of York County that look to overturn the lower court's ruling that Greg Garrett and Anthony Bavuso may farm oysters on their properties without special permission from the county. York County Attorney James Barnett Jr. filed the petitions for appeal in January.

Because the petitions for appeal have been accepted — without a preliminary hearing where Barnett would have to make a case as to why the supreme court should listen to the full case — Barnett now has a chance to convince the court to overturn the Circuit Court decision. Barnett said a hearing likely won't come until after Labor Day.

Read the full story at Williamsburg Yorktown Daily>>

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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