National Fisherman


LONG BEACH, Wash. — Greater than average forecasts of fall chinook and coho salmon are opening the way for more commercial fishing in the Columbia River.

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In an effort to reduce the financial burdens on the region’s struggling fishermen, Governor Charlie Baker and the state’s congressional delegation urged federal officials this week to pay for a controversial program that requires observers to monitor fishermen who catch cod, flounder, and other bottom-dwelling fish.

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Curt Clawson, R-Bonita Springs, has introduced a bill that would ban importing all 11 lionfish species, including the nine that have not been found in U.S. waters.

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The lobster population has crashed to the lowest levels on record in southern New England while climbing to heights never before seen in the cold waters off Maine and other northern reaches — a geographic shift that scientists attribute in large part to the warming of the ocean.

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As Hurricane Katrina lashed everything above ground, it also caused problems for seafood in the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The crop that took the worst hit were oysters, whose annual sales account for hundreds of millions of the enormous Gulf seafood market.

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Recently, Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker called the requirement for fishermen to pay $710 per day for catch monitoring “the most perfect example of an unfunded mandate” and continued on to call the policy “ridiculous” and “outrageous.” As a fisherman with close to 50 years experience in the fishery, I could not agree more but think your readers and editors need more context to understand the fishermen’s anger.

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For James Sewell, diving for scallops on the ocean floor off Maine’s jagged coastline transcends making a living – it’s what keeps him alive.

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SEAFOODNEWS.COM by John Sackton — August 18, 2015 — Something fishy is going on in the rarified world of the Marine Stewardship Council’s global bureaucracy.

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HANCOCK COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Al Garcia caught the attention of the Commission on Marine Resources after the Hancock County shrimper came close to losing his legs after contracting the vibrio virus on a shrimping trip.

Now, the Department of Marine Resources is educating commercial fishermen about the potential risk of coming in contact with the bacteria.

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The company hoping to develop the Pebble mining prospect near Bristol Bay wants a federal court to issue a subpoena for a former scientist for the Environmental Protection Agency who Pebble says fled the country to avoid answering allegations that he worked with mining opponents against the development.

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Page 62 of 407

Inside the Industry

NOAA recently published a proposed rule that would implement a traceability plan to help combat IUU fishing. The program would seek to trace the origins of imported seafood by setting up reporting and filing procedures for products entering the U.S.

The traceability program would collect data on harvest, landing, and chain of custody of fish and fish products that have been identified as particularly vulnerable to IUU fishing and fraud.

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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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