National Fisherman


DUTCH HARBOR, ALASKA — For decades, the crab piled up in fishing boats like gold coins hauled from a rich and fertile sea.
 
But the very ocean that nursed these creatures may prove to be this industry's undoing.
 
New research earlier this year shows that Bristol Bay red king crab — the supersized monster that has come to symbolize the fortunes of Alaska's crab fleet — could fall victim to the changing chemistry of the oceans.
 
Barring a hasty reduction in carbon-dioxide emissions — or evidence that the creatures could acclimate to changing sea conditions — a team of scientists fears Alaska's $100 million red king crab fishery could crash in decades to come.
 
That grim possibility also raises alarm about the crab fleet's other major moneymaker, snow crab.
 
"With red king crab, it's all doom and gloom," said Robert Foy, who oversaw the crab research for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in Kodiak, Alaska. "With snow crab, there's so little known we just can't say. But we don't see anything from our experience that's good for any of these crab. Some is just not as bad as others."
 
Read the full story at Anchorage Daily News>>

Inside the Industry

Governor Bill Walker has officially requested that the federal government declare a disaster for four Alaska regions hurt by one of the poorest pink salmon returns in decades.

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The New England Fishery Management Council recently elected Dr. John F. Quinn of Massachusetts and E. F. “Terry” Stockwell III of Maine to serve respectively as chairman and vice chairman in the year ahead. The two have led the Council since 2014 but reversed roles this year. 

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