National Fisherman


PORT OF BROWNSVILLE — Like hunters anxiously awaiting the start of deer season, shrimp boats from Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi recently converged near the mouth of the Rio Grande along the southern Gulf Coast.
 
They were there to join local shrimpers for the opening of the Texas shrimp harvest season, according to Tony Reisinger, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service agent for coastal and marine resources in Cameron County.
 
The shrimping business is competitive, financially risky and highly dangerous for crew members, Reisinger said, as he boarded vessels to help shrimpers stay compliant with federal rules and regulations.
 
“The traffic of shrimp boats trawling out there in the Gulf will be extremely heavy,” he said. “The payoff can be big if the catch is large and market prices are high, but the investment is very steep. And commercial fishing is the second most dangerous occupation, next to logging.”
 
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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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