National Fisherman


ANCHORAGE, ALASKA — The eastern population of the Steller sea lion will be taken off the threatened species list, a federal agency announced Wednesday.
 
The sea lions, whose range stretches from Alaska's Panhandle to California's Channel Islands, are the first animal to be delisted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in 19 years.
 
The last animal delisted was the eastern North Pacific gray whale, which was taken off the threatened list in 1994, NOAA spokeswoman Julie Speegle said.
 
The agency earlier this year recommended delisting the eastern population of the Steller sea lions, an action sought by the states of Alaska, Washington and Oregon. Commercial fishermen also protested fishing regulations because of the listing.
 
"We're delighted to see the recovery of the eastern population of Steller sea lions," Jim Balsiger, administrator of NOAA Fisheries' Alaska Region, said in a statement announcing the delisting. "We'll be working with the states and other partners to monitor this population to ensure its continued health."
 
Read the full story at Anchorage Daily News>>

Inside the Industry

The following was released by the Maine Department of Marine Resources on Jan. 22:

The Maine Department of Marine Resources announced an emergency regulation that will support the continued rebuilding effort in Maine’s scallop fishery. The rule, effective January 23, 2016, will close the Muscle Ridge Area near South Thomaston and the Western Penobscot Bay Area.

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Louisiana’s Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, which governs commercial and recreational fishing in the state, got a new boss in January. Charlie Melancon, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives and state legislator, was appointed to the job by the state’s new governor, John Bel Edwards.

Although much of his non-political work in the past has centered on the state’s sugar cane industry, Melancon said he is confident that other experience, including working closely with fishermen when in Congress, has prepared him well for this new challenge.

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