Kathy Johnson

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Contributor – Nova Scotia

Posts by Kathy Johnson 311 results

Georges Bank Groundfish Quotas Increased

There’s good news across the board for Georges Bank and 4X5 groundfish harvesters in 2024. For the first time since 1997, the total allowable catch (TAC) for 4X5Y cod has been increased by nine per cent, from 594 metric tonnes (mt) to 660 mt. While it is still bycatch only, the modest increase allows for more flexibility in fishing of other groundfish species while keeping cod removals to a low level, said Lauren Sankey, Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) Communications. In 1997, ...

LFA 34 Licence Holders Voting on Lobster Measurement Increase

Above: Above: Lobster fishing boats check their gear off Baccaro Point. In the background is the lighthouse known as The Salvages. Kathy Johnson photo   Lobster fishing area (LFA) 34 licence holders will be voting whether or not they are in favour of increasing the minimum lobster carapace size to coincide with the new U.S. measure coming into effect on Jan. 25, 2025. “The logistics of how the vote will be undertaken will require a few weeks to sort out but the aim is to have ...

Lobster Landings Continue to be Down in Southwestern Nova Scotia

Above: Cape Sable Island fishers Donnie Smith and his daughter Chrissie Smith check lobster traps alongside the Cape Sable Island Causeway. Kathy Johnson photo   With a month to go before the six-month commercial lobster fishery in lobster fishing areas (LFAs) 33 and 34 closes on May 31, there didn’t seem to be much improvement in landings. “It’s bad. It’s one of those seasons where a lot of the guys are wondering if they should be fishing something else to try and make up ...

Lobster Hits $20/Pound in Southwestern Nova Scotia

Above: The lobster fishing boat Wave Buster XVII steams out of Pubnico Harbour, bound for the fishing grounds. Kathy Johnson photo   A record-setting price of $20 a pound was being paid to lobster harvesters in southwestern Nova Scotia as March was winding down. “I’ve heard numbers above $19 before but hitting $20 is something new,” said Kris Vascotto, executive director of the Nova Scotia Seafood Alliance. “That’s a big number. The other LFAs (lobster fishing areas) ...

Lack of Understanding of Fire Suppression Systems a Factor in Atlantic Destiny Sinking

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) has issued a safety concern regarding insufficient crew knowledge on how to properly use carbon dioxide (CO2) fixed fire suppression systems following the investigation into the sinking of the fishing vessel Atlantic Destiny. With 31 crew on board, the 39.2-metre Atlantic Destiny, operated by Ocean Choice International, left Riverport, Nova Scotia on Feb. 17, 2021 for a 21-day scallop-fishing trip to the fishing grounds near Georges Bank. It ...

Riverside Lobster Permanently Closed

A temporary shutdown has turned into a permanent closure for Riverside Lobster International (RLI) in Meteghan, Digby County. Parent company Champlain Seafood announced on Feb. 13 that Riverside Lobster would not be reopening and will be permanently closed. This shutdown of operations will impact the main lobster processing plant as well as the live lobster holding and export operations. In October 2023, the company announced that Riverside would not process lobster for the fall lobster ...

Emerging Commercial Redfish Fishery a Chance for N.S. Industry to do “Some Really Good Things”

The revival of a commercial fishery, because the stocks have come back, is not something that often happens in Atlantic Canada. In January, federal fisheries Minister Diane Lebouthillier announced the Unit 1 commercial redfish fishery, which has been closed since 1995, will be reopened in two phases, starting this year. “It’s a time in history with the opening of this fishery for people to come together and work collectively in a very positive way, to go forward in a very positive ...

Lacklustre Lobster Season Continues in Southwestern N.S.

Above: Below: The Hit n Miss 1 steams into the Falls Point wharf in Woods Harbour, N.S. during the winter lobster fishery. Kathy Johnson photos   With winter weather finally settling in, the lobster fishery in Southwestern Nova Scotia slowed to a snail’s pace in February. The winter fishery has “been pretty normal considering the way the season started,” said Tommy Amirault president of the Coldwater Lobster Association. “It started down and never really got up, but the ...

N.S. Fish Buyer, Processor Licensing Policy Review Nearing Completion

With consultation from industry, a review of the fish buyer and fish processor licensing policy by the Nova Scotia Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture is drawing to a close. “We need a fair and modern licensing policy in Nova Scotia — one that supports the seafood industry, inspires investor confidence and generates economic returns for fishing communities,” said JoAnn Alberstat, communications advisor for the Department. “The fish buyer, fish processor licensing review was ...

Winter Fishing Slows in LFAs 33 and 34

Some days in January it seemed there were more lobster traps coming ashore than lobsters in the southwestern Nova Scotia lobster fishery. Water temperatures are unusually cold in lobster fishing areas (LFA) 33 and 34 this winter and overall, lobster landings continue to be low for many fishers. “The catches haven’t been that great. There hasn’t been a lot landed this year,” said Lockeport lobster buyer Mike Cotter, Cotter’s Ocean Products. Cotter said water temperatures are ...