The Fisheries Problem from Hell: Right Whales and Gear Entanglement
The North Atlantic right whale population is hovering at the brink of failure, with around 400 surviving individuals.
In some years, there has been some population increase and in other years not. But the fact is that unintentional killing of right whales through both ship strikes and gear entanglements is preventing the population from increasing to a safer level and exacerbating the risk the entire species will go extinct.
Although the population increased between 1990 and 2010, since ...
Looking Beneath the Surface
In the fishery, we are always concerned about what is going
on underneath the surface of the ocean.
Looking at the surface can provide helpful information but
what is below the surface is what really matters.
Beneath that surface is the part of the ocean ecosystem the
fishery depends on. The different fish resources we harvest, the food for those
fish and predators who compete with us to catch them are all down there
somewhere. So is the fishing gear we use to catch them and even the ...
No Dead Whales in the Gulf — Now What?
For many fishermen, the 2018 snow crab fishery in the Gulf of St. Lawrence will probably be filed away as one to forget.
The 2018 season was delayed in opening by the presence of heavy ice in the bays and ports of the region. And once the fishery finally opened, catch rates were much lower than 2017.
However, the biggest disruption to the valuable fishery was the closure of crab fishing areas due to the arrival of right whales in the Gulf. At least 18 North Atlantic right whales had been ...
It is Time to Upset the Apple Cart
For the hardcore Harry Potter fans out there, you probably already know that the motto of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry is Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus — translated as “never tickle a sleeping dragon.”
For the second year in a row, it appears the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) is taking no chances in tickling any of the dragons that regularly participate in the annual recreational groundfish fishery.
Once again, DFO has balked at the idea of implementing ...
Is it OK to Eat the Small Ones?
There is an art to writing a good headline.
A properly written magazine, newspaper or web story headline has several purposes: it should convey to the reader an idea of what an article is about, while at the same time being provocative enough to suck the reader in to want to know more to satisfy their curiosity.
Of all the publications and websites out there, one probably would not put the NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) on the list of compelling headline writers. ...
There is No Silver Bullet for Groundfish
The great philosopher Yogi Berra said, “You can observe a lot by watching.”
You can also learn a lot by listening. I try to do a lot of listening. I think it’s the most important part of my job and of all of our jobs at the Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office and the Northeast Fisheries Science Center.
With all of the activity in the last couple of months, there has certainly been a lot to listen to. For example, we held recreational roundtable meetings in New Jersey and New ...
On the Waterfront — September 2016
OCT Transfers Port Union Plant to Town
The shuttered Ocean Choice International (OCI) fish plant in Port Union, Newfoundland has been handed over to the Municipality of Trinity Bay North.
The plant was closed in 2010 after being severely damaged by Hurricane Igor. At peak capacity, the plant employed more than 170 workers.
OCI said after six years without finding a way to reopen the plant, the company decided to transfer the plant over to the municipality at no cost. The company added ...
Northwest Atlantic Ocean May Get Warmer, Sooner
A new study by NOAA researchers suggests future warming of ocean waters off the Northeastern U.S. may be greater and occur at an even faster rate than previously projected.
Their findings, based on output from four global climate models of varying ocean and atmospheric resolution, indicate that ocean temperature in the U.S. Northeast Shelf is projected to warm twice as fast as previously projected and almost three times faster than the global average. The models were developed at NOAA’s ...