National Fisherman

WASHINGTON — Stalled by lawmakers' focus on the fiscal cliff debate, odds appear to have dimmed for New England fisheries getting $100 million in federal disaster aid by the end of this year.

Members of Massachusetts' congressional delegation said they are now aiming to attach the funds to a larger disaster bill that would also contain relief for victims of Hurricane Sandy, as well as Midwestern farms stricken by drought.

"Our coastal communities depend on a healthy catch to keep local families and businesses churning, just like Midwestern communities rely on the yield of their crops," Alec Gerlach, a spokesman for U.S. Sen. John F. Kerry, D-Mass., said in a statement.

Massachusetts lawmakers expressed skepticism this week that a disaster relief bill could be enacted until after the new 113th Congress convenes in January.

Read the full story at Worcester Telegram & Gazette

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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