National Fisherman


The bluefin tuna purse seine season lasting from 26 May to 24 June came to an early end this year for European purse-seiners. Member States involved in this fishing activity (Spain, France, Italy, Malta and Greece) have exhausted their quotas and have therefore closed their fisheries activities: purse seiners are back to the ports.

During its last annual meeting in November 2012 the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) adopted a reinforced multi-annual recovery plan for bluefin tuna which enhances the sustainable management of the stock and introduces a number of new strict control measures: TAC have slightly been increased and as of 2013, control and traceability of bluefin tuna for both fishing and farming activities have been further reinforced.

Therefore, this year the quota monitoring is based on what fishing vessels declare as well as on what goes in and out bluefin tuna farms. The Commission services noted that new measures are being implemented and that concrete and efficient results are being recorded: Member States have taken drastic decisions to ensure a sustainable management of bluefin tuna stock.

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Inside the Industry

The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:

The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.

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Louisiana’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, which governs commercial and recreational fishing in the state, got a new boss in January. Charlie Melancon, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives and state legislator, was appointed to the job by the state’s new governor, John Bel Edwards.

Although much of his non-political work in the past has centered on the state’s sugar cane industry, Melancon said he is confident that other experience, including working closely with fishermen when in Congress, has prepared him well for this new challenge.

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