National Fisherman

BOWERS BEACH — "White Gold," a documentary about Delaware's oystering history and a present day story about a Delaware waterman's struggle to bring a 1893 wooden schooner back to its former glory, will debut in a free public showing at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 22 at Bowers Beach Fire Hall.

Wilmington filmmaker Michael Oates will introduce the documentary.

One hundred years ago, Leipsic, Little Creek, and Bowers Beach were among Delaware's flourishing maritime communities, relying on huge harvests of Delaware Bay oysters, commonly called "white gold."

Stately wooden schooners plied Delaware Bay, dredging as many as 900,000 bushels annually. Stories abound of local captains lighting cigars with $100 bills and buying new Cadillacs every year.

Yet today's annual oyster harvest is limited to less than 15,000 bushels with oyster beds decimated by a succession of deadly diseases and all but one of the sailing schooners gone.

Yet, these Bayshore communities and the commercial watermen who built them somehow endure.

Read the full story at the Delaware State News>>

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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