National Fisherman

WASHINGTON - It's being called the worst blue crab season in 20 years.
Last winter, the Chesapeake Bay was fully stocked with blue crabs. But now, the population is depleted and retailers are having to pull them from other states to bring them to the table.
At Jesse Taylor Seafood on the Southwest Waterfront, manager Stan Kiser agrees it's the worst blue crab season he's seen. Every crabber is pulling in fewer bushels, he says.
"Instead of dealing with two or three people, you have to deal with 10 people to get the amount that you need," Kiser says.
But the demand is still high. So, Jesse Taylor's as well as other wholesale markets and restaurants are pulling their blue crabs in from out of state and charging the consumer more.
"As far north as Delaware and as far south as Florida," Kiser says.
"We're experiencing this scarcity of crabs from Florida to New Jersey and the whole East Coast as far as commercial crabbing for blue crabs," says Jack Brooks, president of the Chesapeake Bay Seafood Industries Association.
Blue crabs are fighting to survive for a number of reasons, Brooks says. Their natural habitat -- grasses that grow in the bay -- are thin, giving them little place to hide. Pollution levels increased in the bay after major storms like Hurricane Sandy and Irene forced runoff into the watershed.
Finally, one of the blue crabs' natural predators, the striped bass, which is protected by the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission is thriving, Brooks says.
Read the full story at WTOP>>

Inside the Industry

The anti-mining group Salmon Beyond Borders expressed disappointment and dismay last week at Alaska Governor Bill Walker’s announcement that he has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with B.C. Premier Christy Clark.

This came just days after his administration asked members of his newly-formed Transboundary Rivers Citizens Advisory Work Group to provide comment on a Draft Statement of Cooperation associated with Transboundary mining.


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.

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