Comeback cod lessens gloom over emptying seas

It was hours before dawn on a heaving Arctic sea, and snow showers were making it hard for Kurt Ludvigsen to find his fishing buoys with the trawler’s powerful searchlight.

But the 49-year-old Norwegian was less bothered by the conditions than by the large numbers of cod flailing in the nets he and his younger brother Trond winched aboard.

“It’s paradoxical but we have too many fish this year,” the older Ludvigsen said. “Prices have fallen 30 percent … We’re having to work far harder.”

Just over six years ago, an article in the U.S. journal Science projected that all fish and seafood species, on current trends, would collapse by 2048.

A cod bonanza off north Norway and Russia and recovery of some fish stocks off developed nations from the United States to Australia have led many scientists to say the future for over-fished world stocks is a bit less bleak.

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