National Fisherman


ELLSWORTH — With harvesters pocketing as much as $2,600 for a pound of elvers last spring, fishing for the tiny, transparent juvenile eels was almost like panning for gold in a stream full of nuggets. But the gold rush may soon be over.

On Friday, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) announced that it would soon release a draft management plan that is likely to have a profound effect on the fishery for American eels, including elvers. In the worst case, the plan could even bring the commercial fishery to a halt.

Within the next two or three weeks, ASMFC plans to publish a "Draft Addendum III" to its Interstate Fishery Management Plan for American eels. Among other measures up for consideration, the draft will include an option to establish an overall, annual landings quota for elvers — also know as glass eels — or to impose a moratorium on their harvest.

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Inside the Industry

Legislators from Connecticut and Massachusetts complained about the current “out-of-date allocation formula” in black sea bass, summer flounder and scup fisheries in a letter to the U.S. Department of Commerce earlier this week.

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The Southeast Alaska Fishermen’s Alliance recently announced that the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation has awarded the organization a Hollings Grant to reduce whale entanglements in Alaska salmon fisheries by increasing the use of acoustic whale pingers to minimize entanglements in fishing gear.

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