Early this year, Adam Sewall, 38, and Eleza Jaeger, 33, were tracking production on their line of blackcod pots, running a charter fishing business and commercial fishing in the San Francisco Bay Area, all while managing school schedules and caring for their three children — Hazel, age 9, Rhye, age 6, and Shel, 9 months.

The fishing family watched as the spread of covid-19 began to disrupt commerce and lives around the globe, first when their Chinese blackcod pot manufacturer shuttered in January as the virus spread through nations on the other side of the Pacific.

Then in March, it took hold on the West Coast, closing down their nonessential charter business and the kids' school. There was not much left to do but move the whole operation onto their boat the Gatherer and make a go of it — commercial fishing and homeschooling with the whole family onboard the 28-footer.

I had the chance to catch up with them via video chat and find out how this fishing family pivoted to get through the pandemic.

Jaeger and Sewall teamed up with a local community supported fishery — Sea Forager Seafood — to sell their catch, and they also began documenting their new lives in the School of Fish.

You can follow the family on Instagram @gatherer_outfitters and on Facebook @bayareafishingcharters.

If you're local and would like to buy fresh local fish, visit out the Sea Forager Seafood website or on Facebook.

Check out the blackcod gear at Longlinepots.com.

Jessica Hathaway is the editor in chief of National Fisherman. She has been covering the fishing industry for 14 years, serves on the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute's Communications Committee and is a National Fisheries Conservation Center board member.

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