The federal law that mandates fishery management sets ten national standards that all fishing regulations must meet. But those standards are somewhat vague and sometimes even contradictory. They set managers the difficult task of protecting fish stocks while simultaneously preserving fishing communities. They’re also supposed to ensure that fishing rights are distributed fairly and equitably.
As fishing areas close in the face of dwindling stocks, we look at what the hopes are among fishing folks for the future. In some areas -- such as lobsters, scallops and striped bass -- there are success stories that can be looked at to determine what is going right. But other areas of the sea are closed, and some wonder if they will stay that way.
Trying to keep track of Who's Who when it comes to New England's Fisheries can be very confusing. In an attempt to clear up some of the confusion, here is your 4-minute Video Guide to the Players. It's a high-speed, information-packed chalkboard illustration - check it out.
As the people who work the sea for food face growing challenges - such as fewer fish to catch and more stringent regulations - shellfish farming is flourishing. It’s commonly called aquaculture, and while it surely has pitfalls, more and more people are entering the business and making a decent living at it. Demand is high, and prices are relatively stable.
Wellfleetin particular is known as a hotbed for oyster farming, and the shellfish growing areas along the town’s inner shoreline continue to be productive.
For decades, fishery management has focused almost exclusively on the need to restrict fishing. Now, environmental changes are forcing fishermen and regulators to reevaluate their traditional practices.
Ernie Eldredge has been fishing all his life - clamming, long-lining cod, and crewing on sea scallop boats. But weir fishing is his love and mainstay. Last May, Eldredge netted something (or rather, two somethings) that even he’d rarely seen before – an Atlantic croaker and a grey triggerfish.
As water temperatures rise and southern species become more common in New England's waters, there's the question of whether they could replace the region’s iconic cod - ecologically, economically, and culturally.
The benefits of seafood are well known. Omega 3s from fish are good for metabolism, while fish oil is thought to help with inflammation in the body. But consumption of certain species of fish can pose health risks, particularly for pregnant women and children.
In a marine biology lab at Roger Williams University, Professor David Taylor placed a small, bite-sized chunk of fish inside a counter-top piece of equipment called a DMA-8 mercury analyzer, which will determine how much mercury this piece of scup contains in its flesh.