National Fisherman

NEWPORT NEWS — A weak female blue crab population, continued predator infiltration and a need to conserve juvenile blue crab growth have prompted members of the Virginia Marine Resources Commission to move forward with staff recommendations to reduce the female blue crab harvest by 10 percent.
The commissioners Tuesday voted 4-2 to adopt new regulation measures that would limit the number of blue crabs being harvested in Virginia's Chesapeake Bay.
Effective July 5, all Virginia commercial crabbers will see their bushel limits slashed by 10 percent for a year.
That means from July 5 this year to July 4, 2015, blue crab harvesters with up to 425 crab pots in the bay can only collect up to 47 bushels under the new regulations, down from 55 bushels currently.
Read the full story at the Daily Press>>

Inside the Industry

NMFS recently released a draft action plan for fish discard and release mortality science, creating a list of actions that they hope can better inform fisheries.

We know that fishermen have to deal with bycatch by discarding or releasing unwanted catch overboard, but there is a data gap regarding how those fish survive.


A new study has identified a set of features common to all ocean ecosystems that provide a visual diagnosis of the health of the underwater environment coastal communities rely on.

Together, the features detail cumulative effects of threats -- such as overfishing, pollution, and invasive species,  allowing responders to act faster to increase ocean resiliency and sustainability.

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