As trades go, this isn’t exactly guns for hostages or Heathcliff Slocumb for Jason Varitek and Derek Lowe. Still it’s pretty interesting.


Fishermen in Gloucester-based Fishing Sector 4 and other sectors, with funding assistance from the Gloucester Fishing Community Preservation Fund (GFCPF), are offering to surrender up to 60 metric tons of their annual cod catch entitlement if NOAA Fisheries will relax some of the emergency measures it instituted in November to protect Gulf of Maine cod.


In return for voluntarily reducing their available annual catch limit, the sectors ask the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to eliminate the 200-pound trip limit — regarded by fishermen as a discredited input control — for Gulf of Maine cod bycatch and open up enough of the closed areas to afford fishermen access to the fishing ground’s more abundant stocks.


“You could say we’re trading fish for input controls,” said Vito Giacalone, GFCPF executive director.


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