Nautical News: For the week of January 6th, 2012


Are fishermen’s prayers being answered? Is Mother Nature bringing more species of fish to the New England? NOAA scientists claim that because ocean temperatures are warmer in the northeast, it is affecting marine fish distribution and abundance. The gray snapper fish population is an example of fish moving from Florida and Georgia into New England coastal waters. Gray snapper has been an important fishery species along the southeast U.S. coast, the Gulf of Mexico, and even in South America, but scientists said that juvenile gray snapper have been reported as far north as Massachusetts.


Consumer Reports magazine is condemning the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s recent approval of genetically modified salmon for human consumption. The magazine reported that the FDA’s approval was “flawed and inadequate” and that not enough tests were performed to learn the dangers of allergic reactions they might cause. Now the U.S. Fish and Wildlife is looking into it. Although the company altering the fish claims their fish are sterile, that sterilization process is not 100 percent. There is the possibility that some of these fish could escape into the wild and mate with the wild native salmon. Furthermore, the government did not require labeling of the modified fish so consumers would not know what they were buying and eating. However, there is a country of origin law, and the fish that are being engineered are growing in Panama, but labeling of fish is not required in restaurants or seafood markets that sell less than $250,000 of seafood a year.


According to the National Marine Manufacturers Association, the U.S. recreational boating industry saw a 10 percent jump in new powerboat sales in 2012. This was the first increase in annual sales since 2008. Analysts forecast a repeat performance for 2013 because of owners replacing their boats that were destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.


The New York Boat Show opened this week. Although the show’s overall square footage was less than previous years, about 260 exhibitors participated. By the show’s closing today, 42,000 people were expected to attend. That is comparable to last year’s attendance.


The Coast Guard honored the Civil War vessel USS Monitor with a wreath-laying ceremony over where it sank 150 years ago on December 31st in a storm near Cape Hatteras, N.C. The Monitor was the first ironclad warship commissioned by the Navy during the Civil War. Sixteen men died when the ship sank. Coast Guard Lt. Cmdr. Kevin Saunders said, “The Monitor is one of the most significant ships in U.S. history. It revolutionized Naval architecture and warfare. It was honored and revered by both Union and Confederate descendants. The sailors who served on the Monitor displayed legendary bravery, and it is a reminder to all who work on the sea that nature can be ferocious.”


Last on today’s nautical news, Muhammad Shahid, a Pakistanian man who sells fish at Queens Market in London, has become an internet sensation. He is now known as the “One Pound Fish Guy” because of the way he hawks his fish, singing “Have a, have a look, one pound fish. Very, very good, one pound fish.” The British pound is worth $1.60. So far Warner Music is recording his fishy song and he has appeared on the cable and network news stations around the world. His video on aYouTube has been viewed more than 10 million times.

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