Not unlike a professional baseball season, the federal fisheries management process is long and, at times, arduous. In baseball, a single game can be seemingly insignificant until the playoffs, where it can all go wrong in a few short innings. In managing fish, the grinding management process can drag for years, yet turn on a dime when it comes to completion and implementation. In both cases, the victory comes from tenacity, understanding the process, and staying focused till the end.
To say that this year’s meeting of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) was a disappointment would be a vast understatement.
Executive Order creates legacy of conservation
ST. MICHAELS, MD - Surrounded by conservationists and anglers on the shores of historic Chesapeake Bay, President Bush today signed an Executive Order establishing gamefish status for red drum and striped bass in federal waters. The Order is a landmark victory for recreational anglers who have fought for decades to restore and conserve two of the most coveted sport fish in America.
Gulf Council considers plan to reward commercial sector for overfishing amberjack
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council has declared that Gulf greater amberjack are overfished and is considering increasing the commercial share of the fishery and reducing the recreational bag limit to one fish for every two anglers aboard a vessel. The recreational restrictions are being considered despite the fact that unchecked commercial overfishing since 1990 is the primary cause of problems in the fishery.
National Marine Fisheries Service denies request to open key conservation areas to commercial longlines
WASHINGTON, DC - Conservationists are hailing a decision by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to deny a request to allow longline fishing boats into conservation zones off South Carolina, Georgia and Florida that have been closed to the destructive commercial fishing gear since 2001.
The bill for decades of overharvest has come due in the form of an overfished summer flounder stock
The most recent summer flounder stock assessment brought some unwelcome news to East Coast anglers last week and will almost certainly result in additional catch reductions for recreational fishermen. The assessment, conducted by National Marine Fisheries Service, indicated that years of mismanagement have finally caught up to summer flounder, and steps will have to be taken to set the recovery back on course.
North America’s largest refiner offers three-year commitment to youth angler outreach and education program
SAN ANTONIO, TX – Coastal Conservation Association and Valero Energy Corporation have teamed up to promote conservation ethics in young anglers. Through a dynamic youth program that will include an eye-catching newsletter, interactive web site, and conservation-oriented school lesson plans, Valero and CCA will work to capture the enthusiasm of children and encourage them to understand and protect the coastal landscape.
CCA-funded study will examine effectiveness of recreational catch-and-release practices
HOUSTON, TX – Less than a month after winning a precedent-setting victory to reduce the impact of shrimp trawl bycatch on Gulf red snapper stocks, Coastal Conservation Association has funded the next step in its ongoing strategy for the conservation of the fishery. CCA Texas approved a request to fund a study at the University of Texas Marine Science Institute to assess the catch-and-release mortality of recreationally caught red snapper and to develop best practices for handling and proper release.
Fisheries management council thwarts commercial industry efforts to exploit Atlantic pelagic species
KEY WEST, FL - The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council voted last week to recommend that the National Marine Fisheries Service deny an application to allow pelagic longline fishing boats into conservation zones off South Carolina, Georgia and Florida that have been closed to this destructive commercial fishing gear since 2001.
HOUSTON, TX – One person’s trash really is another person’s treasure.