National Fisherman

BOSTON — What science says about the number of fish in the waters off New England shapes the rules that govern the region's struggling fishing fleet. And lately for key species, those estimates have been way off.
 
Some federal population estimates for bottom-dwelling groundfish, such as cod and flounder, have swung wildly. That leaves fishermen scrambling to deal with sudden drops or gains in the portfolio of stocks they depend on to make a living. In addition, a pattern has emerged showing the same bad predictions about key fish species are repeated.
 
Some question how population estimates with such obvious flaws can be used to as a basis for steep cuts in the catches, including massive reductions enacted in May.
 
"I think it's irresponsible to shut down fisheries based on such inaccurate stock assessments," said Steve Cadrin, a former federal stock assessment scientist and a professor at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth.
 
Read the full story at Gloucester Times>>

National Fisherman Live

National Fisherman Live: 11/06/14

In this episode:

NOAA report touts 2013 landings, value increases
Panama fines GM salmon company Aquabounty
Gulf council passes Reef Fish Amendment 40
Maine elver quota cut by 2,000 pounds
Offshore mussel farm would be East Coast’s first

 

Inside the Industry

EAST SAND ISLAND, Oregon—Alexa Piggott is crawling through a dark, dusty, narrow tunnel on this 62-acre island at the mouth of the Columbia River. On the ground above her head sit thousands of seabirds. Piggott, a crew leader with Bird Research Northwest, is headed for an observation blind from which she'll be able to count them.
 
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NOAA and its fellow Natural Resource Damage Assessment trustees in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill have announced the signing of a formal Record of Decision to implement a gulf restoration plan. The 44 projects, totaling an estimated $627 million, will restore barrier islands, shorelines, dunes, underwater grasses and oyster beds.

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