National Fisherman

Virginia and Maryland menhaden fishermen had to pack up their equipment on the Potomac River last week.
 
The Potomac River Fisheries Commission closed all menhaden fisheries in the Potomac River Aug. 22 complying with new catch limits mandated by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC).  The commission determined that overfishing was taking place and set new limits.
 
Twenty pound net fishermen take about 99 percent of the menhaden in the Potomac River. This accounts for about 26 percent of the coast-wide quota.
 
This year menhaden were not as abundant in the Potomac as last year, according to Ellen Cosby, assistant executive secretary of the commission. The commission tracks menhaden catches closely. Instead of the fishery being closed in June, it closed this month.
 
ASMFC will allow pound net fishermen a 6,000 pound daily bycatch limit per licensee by ASMFC. The commission met earlier this year with pound net fishermen to inform them of the new limits.
 
“Everybody was on board, everyone knew what was going on, nobody was surprised,” said Cosby.
 
Since any overage in this years catch would be deducted from next year’s limit, the fishermen were “very much in support of the program…they wanted to get close but not go over.”
 
While Virginia fishermen on the Potomac have been quiet about the closure Maryland, the fishermen are in an uproar and threatening a lawsuit against Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources.
 
Read the full story at the Westmoreland News>>

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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