National Fisherman


CHATHAM — Commercial gillnet fisherman Charlie Dodge lugged a full orange bushel basket of what appeared to be small plastic footballs into the large meeting room at the Cape Cod Commercial Fishermen's Alliance headquarters.
 
"That's $18,000 in pingers," Dodge said, setting the heavy load of 160 of the plastic devices onto the floor. Pingers emit a high-frequency sound that harbor porpoises in particular do not like. Gillnet fishermen attach these devices, about the size of a closed fist, to the rope of the nets they suspend vertically in the water from buoys, like sheets on a clothesline, to catch fish. Each fisherman can set out 100 or more of these large nets that sometimes stay out for days.
 
The hope is that the signal of the pingers will discourage harbor porpoises — small 5-foot-long mammals protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act — that eat herring, capelin and other schooling fish, from swimming into the nets and becoming entangled.
 
Read the full story at Cape Cod Times>>

Inside the Industry

NOAA recently published a proposed rule that would implement a traceability plan to help combat IUU fishing. The program would seek to trace the origins of imported seafood by setting up reporting and filing procedures for products entering the U.S.

The traceability program would collect data on harvest, landing, and chain of custody of fish and fish products that have been identified as particularly vulnerable to IUU fishing and fraud.

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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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