National Fisherman


The federal government this week will begin the largest removal of illegal lobster fishing habitats, commonly called casitas, from Florida Keys waters.
 
Starting Thursday, marine salvors contracted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) will be removing casitas that were once placed and used by commercial lobster diver David Dreifort, who pleaded guilty to poaching charges in 2009 and served about two years in prison.
 
Dreifort had nearly 700 illegal casitas in waters between Big Pine Key and Key West, according to his plea agreement with federal prosecutors.
 
Read the full story at Keys 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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