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>>

National Fisherman Live

National Fisherman Live: 3/10/15

In this episode, Online Editor Leslie Taylor talks with Mike McLouglin, vice president of Dunlop Industrial and Protective Footwear.

National Fisherman Live: 2/24/15

In this episode:

March date set for disaster aid dispersal
Oregon LNG project could disrupt fishing
NOAA tweaks gear marking requirement
N.C. launches first commercial/recreational dock
Spiny lobster traps limits not well received

Inside the Industry

NMFS announced two changes in regulations that apply to federal fishing permit holders starting Aug. 26.

First, they have eliminated the requirement for vessel owners to submit “did not fish” reports for the months or weeks when their vessel was not fishing.

Some of the restrictions for upgrading vessels listed on federal fishing permits have also been removed.

Read more...

Alaskans will meet with British Columbia’s Minister of Energy and Mines, Bill Bennett, when he visits Juneau next week and will ask him to support an international review of mine developments in northwest British Columbia, upstream from Southeast Alaska along the Taku, Stikine and Unuk transboundary rivers.

Some Alaska fishing and environmental groups believe an international review is the best way to develop specific, binding commitments to ensure clean water, salmon, jobs and traditional and customary practices are not harmed by British Columbia mines and that adequate financial assurances are in place up front to cover long-term monitoring and compensation for damages.

Read more...
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