Nautical News: For the week of August 4, 2019

FISH FOUND WITH PARASITES FROM SEALS?

 

Numerous reports are coming in about the increase of parasites observed in fish. Many believe there is a correlation between the parasites and the booming seal population in our waters. The Northwest Atlantic Seal Research Consortium and Center for Coastal Studies are interested in obtaining samples of the worms/parasites that are being observed specifically in our cod, haddock and now black sea bass or any other species you are observing worms in the fillets. This will help determine if the parasites are coming from a host mammal like a seal. It will also provide information needed to develop a research plan to determine if there are other factors for these parasites increasing in our fish. You can provide whole fish or part of the fish with worms/parasites, placed in a dedicated clean Ziploc bag kept under ice – do not freeze it – and forward it to the Center for Coastal Studies in Provincetown. Provide basic details of the species of fish, weight, length, date and approximate location where it was landed.

 

GOOGLE GLOBAL WARMING CLIMATE SUMMIT INVITES CELEBRITIES WITH PRIVATE JETS AND MEGA YACHTS

 

TV and movie stars who think the world will end in twelve years because of global warming are vacationing in Italy on their yachts during Google’s Global Climate Summit. Katy Perry, Orlando Bloom, Bradley Cooper and Oprah looked relaxed and unconcerned about their carbon footprint while boating around Sicily. Google invited 200 celebrities who arrived in 114 private jets and partied aboard $400 million mega yachts. Attendees also brought along their Maseratis, Ferraris, Porches and high-end SUVs.

 

VINEYARD WIND PROJECT SUBJECT TO MORE SCRUTINY

 

All three federal agencies that weighed in on Vineyard Wind’s construction and operations plan have focused on the east-to-west orientation of the 84 wind turbines and how far they will be spaced apart. The feds want the turbines to be at least one mile apart, but the developer wants them closer and to be in a zig zag diagonal pattern. National Marine Fisheries Service Regional Administrator Michael Pentony said the layout of the turbines fails to fully analyze the clear patterns of east-west orientation of fishing activity throughout much of the wind farm area. While an east-to-west turbine layout “would not fully eliminate impacts to fishing operations, impacts would be minimized for some fishing vessels, allowing them to continue to fish the area and thus reducing the negative economic impacts they incur,” Pentony said. Meanwhile, Nautical Talk Radio has learned that an advisory board of Rhode Island fishermen accepted a financial package from Vineyard Wind that included $4.2 million in payments over 30 years for direct impacts to their commercial fishermen. It also called for the creation of a $12.5 million trust set up over five years that could be used to cover additional costs to fishermen associated with the project.

 

MASSACHUSETTS HEARING TO INCREASE COMMERCIAL FLUKE AND STRIPED BASS LIMITS

 

The Division of Marine Fisheries is seeking public comment on temporarily adjusting its in-season commercial fluke and striped bass fishing limits; including possession limits, open days, and how soon to put any of these adjustments into effect. These adjustments are being proposed to provide additional flexibility to these commercial fisheries to facilitate the harvest and landing of the state’s commercial quotas for these species and to account for the potential loss of fishing opportunities due to weather during the fall. Currently, average daily landings are about 18,000 pounds. It is likely that landings will only approach 50% of the state’s quota by Labor Day, and historical trends suggest fall landings will be even less based on declining participation and inclement weather that affects this small-boat fishery. By increasing the number of open fishing days per week beginning in September, the state claims that commercial fishermen will have more flexibility to access the resource on optimal weather days. Written public comment will be accepted until 5PM on Wednesday, August 14, 2019. Small inshore family fishing boats are against any changes or increases in quotas as those changes stating the prices are too low and it will make it more worthwhile for bigger offshore boats satisfy the quota and put the smaller family inshore boats out of business.

 

2018 NOAA STATUS REPORT OF U.S. FISHERIES RELEASED

 

The 2018 NOAA report on the status of U.S. fisheries has been released, and it reveals that environmental factors are having the most impact on stocks that were previously listed as overfished. Therefore, the report lists less species subjected to overfishing in 2018 than in 2017. The report also claimed that more than 90 percent of stocks were fished at a sustainable level. A NOAA official said the report highlights that the science-based approach to fisheries management is working, but it needs to adapt to environmental factors where the majority of stocks live. He concluded by saying the places we’ve done the stock assessments and gotten our data from in the past may need to adapt as well.

 

GULF OF MEXICO DEAD ZONE NOT AS BIG AS NOAA PREDICTED

 

Scientists studying this year’s “dead zone” in the Gulf of Mexico announced that the size of this year’s zone is about a thousand square miles smaller than what NOAA predicted. Now NOAA is claiming the latest survey might be flawed because it took place after Hurricane Barry hit the Gulf. That storm, with its heavy winds, brought in salt water that diluted the “dead zone.” Scientists say the survey should be done again in a week to get the results they want. Scientists predicted a larger dead zone because of the record flooding along the Mississippi River that produced significant runoffs of nitrate and phosphorus into the river, which flows into the Gulf.

 

 

MORE GREAT WHITES CLOSE MORE BEACHES

 

Sightings of great white sharks have closed a number of different beaches on lower Cape Cod. In some cases, lifeguards shut down the beaches for an hour or two and some shut them down for a much longer period. There was even an unconfirmed report of a great white swimming off Edgartown on Martha’s Vineyard.

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