National Fisherman


NEW BEDFORD — Tentative results from the second experimental yellowtail flounder survey strongly suggest that the fish are far more plentiful than most scientists believe.
 
Dr. Kevin Stokesbury of the UMass School for Marine Science and Technology said that the eight trawls counted so far from the trip indicate plentiful yellowtail on Georges Bank, which is something that scallopers have contended for years.
 
Stokesbury made his comments during a presentation about SMAST to the newly reorganized Massachusetts Marine Fisheries Institute, which met this week in New Bedford. The institute is intended to combine the state and the university, along with the industry, to develop new science around fisheries.
 
Stokesbury's team, financed by donations of equipment, boat and food and by part of a $425,000 state grant, returned from an eight-day expedition on Wednesday. The goal was to use experimental videos and advanced net design to count fish.
 
Yellowtail are of particular interest since they are a "choke species" with very low quotas. Since scallops and yellowtail share the bottom, scallopers would incidentally catch their quota of yellowtail far before catching their scallop quotas, and they would be required to stop fishing.
 
Read the full story at Standard-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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