National Fisherman


Maine’s lucrative baby eel season is off to a slow start, with cold weather and resurgent foreign markets combining to depress catch and prices paid to fishermen, officials say.
 
Baby eels, called elvers, are Maine’s second most-valuable fishery after lobsters. The volume and value of the state’s elver fishery have boomed in recent years, with catch topping 18,000 pounds and $32 million in value for each of the past two years.
 
The state, concerned about overfishing, instituted a quota this year for the first time. But more than three weeks into the eight-week season, Maine elver fishermen have caught only about 2,900 pounds, about 1,000 pounds off last year’s pace and a quarter of the 11,749-pound quota, said Maine Marine Resources Commissioner Pat Keliher.
 
Read the full story at Morning Sentinel>>

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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