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IN BRIEF - 'Salmon signature' used to study historic Alaska fish returns

UNITED STATES
Thursday, February 14, 2013

Alaskan fishermen are no strangers to the roller coaster flux of salmon returning to home spawning grounds. Most fishermen have experienced or at least witnessed both banner years and disaster years, riding out the consequences of a life lived according to marine resources.

Modern biologists have come to recognize these strong and weak variances as cycles that span not years but decades. Now, studies coming out of the University of Washington (UW) are indicating recognizable cycles that cross hundreds of years in their rotation.

Source: Hannah Heimbuch / Alaska Dispatch

 


IN BRIEF - Lobster marketing board meetings provide 'good feedback'

CANADA
Monday, January 26, 2015

Forms allowing fishermen to vote in plebiscite on board must be received by Jan. 26.

P.E.I. lobster fishermen have just a few more days to register to vote in the upcoming lobster marketing board plebiscite.

The P.E.I. Fishermen's Association has been holding information meetings across the province about the marketing board, which will be in charge of collecting a one cent a pound harvester levy that will be used to promote Island lobster.

Fishermen have already voted in favour of the levy, but now they have to vote on the marketing board itself.

The voting registration forms must be received by Jan. 26.

Ballots for the marketing board plebiscite will be mailed out on March 5 to registered voters and must be returned by March 26.

Source:   CBC News- Read full story here


IN BRIEF - Ban on new aquaculture projects was imposed to give time for possible settlement over SMP dispute

UNITED STATES
Monday, January 26, 2015

The city's six-month ban on new commercial aquaculture activities will give Bainbridge Island time to make a "limited amendment" to the new aquaculture rules in its updated Shoreline Master Program, officials said this week.

The Bainbridge Island City Council unanimously adopted an emergency six-month moratorium at its meeting Tuesday on new aquaculture projects. The ban is aimed at projects that would require a substantial shoreline development permit and conditional use permits.

 

The move was needed, according to the city, to preserve the "status quo" and stop new applications for commercial aquaculture projects while the city has a chance to amend its new aquaculture regulations.

Source:  BRIAN KELLY/Bainbridge Island Review - Read full story here


IN BRIEF - Icicle Seafoods is up for sale

UNITED STATES
Monday, January 26, 2015

Paine & Partners of San Francisco has announced the sale of Icicle Seafoods according to multiple news sources including Undercurrent.com and other seafood industry news sites.

According to Laine Welch of the Fish Factor, Pacific Seafoods is seen as a frontrunner for buying Icicle.

Other sources theorize that Icicle is a “mini-conglomerate” that would make the company attractive to multiple buyers if broken up.

The Oregon-based Pacific Seafood Group is a family owned operation that has operations spanning the west coast from Mexico to Alaska.

The investment firm Paine & Partners bought Icicle Seafoods in 2007.

Icicle Seafoods began in 1965 when a group of employees and fishermen in Petersburg bought the Pacific American Fisheries cannery. The company has grown to own and operate processing ships and fishing boats throughout Alaska and process salmon, pollock and crab. Icicle also runs a farmed salmon business in the Pacific Northwest, with farms at Bainbridge Island, Cypress Island, Port Angeles and Hope Island, Wash

Source: petersburgpilot.com


IN BRIEF - Scientists call for destructive seabed trawling to be banned

UNITED KINGDOM
Monday, January 26, 2015

Sixty marine scientists have signed an open letter urging the fisheries minister, George Eustice, to stop Spanish and French fishermen damaging wildlife in the deep sea.

The scientists were joined by MPs in demanding an end to bottom trawling below 600 metres in all European waters. The Tory MP Richard Benyon, a former fisheries minister, and the former Labour environment minister Ben Bradshaw are also planning to write to Mr Eustice.

About a third of the seas surrounding and controlled by the UK are deeper than 600m but 94 per cent of the fish legally caught there are taken by French and Spanish vessels. Stocks of orange roughies have already been destroyed and scientists fear other species, including deep water sharks, will follow.

Banning deep sea bottom trawling would affect just 12 of the UK’s 5,000 fishing vessels, a Commons briefing was told, and those 12 take less than 1,000 tonnes each year. The main commercial species in bottom trawling are roundnose grenadiers, black scabbardfish and blue ling, but fish belonging to dozens more species are discarded.

The scientists warned that bottom trawling below 600m damages the seabed and the rare and slow-growing fish and other wildlife that live there. They are particularly concerned at the loss of rare cold water coral reefs, groups of sponges, and groups of mysterious, tennis-ball-sized, single-cell creatures called xenophyophores.

Source: LEWIS SMITH/independent.co.uk - Read full story here


IN BRIEF - First Nations, union agree herring fishery should stay shut

CANADA
Monday, January 26, 2015

The union representing fishermen is joining the Haida First Nation and Nuu-chah-nulth tribal council to oppose the opening of herring fisheries in Haida Gwaii and the west coast of Vancouver Island this year.

Last year, the Nuu-chah-nulth won an injunction against the DFO to stop the fishery from opening. Both the Nuu-chah-nulth and the Haida said if the DFO doesn't back down this year, they will go to the courts to stop the fisheries.

Last night commercial fishermen held a meeting to talk about this year's strategy.

Herring stocks have been doing well in the Georgia Strait. Those fisheries on the east side of Vancouver Island will open this year.

Source: CBC News - Read full story here


IN BRIEF - BP boss says Deepwater liabilities exceed cost of Hurricane Katrina

UNITED KINGDOM
Monday, January 26, 2015

I interviewed Bob Dudley, the chief executive of BP, at Davos and after a lot of interesting discussion about the global oil price (he thinks it could stay flat for as much as three years), the conversation turned to America and the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon disaster.

We are approaching the fifth anniversary of the accident which led to the death of 11 people.

BP is still wrapped up in legal actions which will finally set the full costs the oil company is expected to pay in fines, clean-up costs and compensation to those affected.

As we were speaking, Mr Dudley made a remarkable point.

The cost to BP of the Deepwater disaster could be higher than the "actual" - to use his word - cost of Hurricane Katrina.

"We had a terrible industrial accident in 2010," Mr Dudley told me.

"The company has liabilities of $44bn, that's actually more than the actual damage of Hurricane Katrina. These numbers are absolutely extraordinary."

Source: Kamal Ahmed/BBC News - read full story here


IN BRIEF - Over 120 Muleba Farmers Get 9 Million for Aquaculture Projects

TANZANIA
Monday, January 26, 2015

Bukoba — OVER 120 farmers at Ruhanga village, in Muleba District, Kagera Region, have been given soft loans amounting to 9m/- to enable them improve aquaculture activities.

Muleba District Commissioner, Mr Lembris Kipuyo, told the 'Daily News' that the funds were disbursed under the District Youth Development Fund, urging them to ensure the funds were well utilized.

Deputy Minister for Livestock and Fisheries Development, Mr Kaiko Telele, appealed to residents in Kagera Region to diversify aquaculture because the region had a big potential in the subsector.

Source: Meddy Mulisa/AllAfrica.com


IN BRIEF - Bering Sea Pollock Fishery Casts Off & stricter limit on the amount of halibut

UNITED STATES
Monday, January 26, 2015

Bering Sea Pollock Fishery Casts Off & stricter limit on the amount of halibut

The Bering Sea’s largest fishery opened up on Tuesday afternoon. Pollock crews are gearing up for a potential increase in their harvest — while still keeping an open mind about what the winter has in store.

Once they start fishing vessels in the UniSea cooperative will have a little extra pollock to work with, too.The catch limit increased about 3 percent this year to 1.3 million metric tons.

According to studies from the National Marine Fisheries Service, the amount of pollock in the Bering Sea is on the rise. That’s part of the reason why this year’s catch limit went up.

But other fish aren’t faring so well. Halibut have been getting smaller and harder to find. And the harvests have been shrinking, too.

That’s prompted some Alaska’s acting fish and game commissioner and others to file an emergency petition. They want a stricter limit on the amount of halibut that trawlers are allowed to take on accident — while they’re pursuing other fish, including pollock.

Source:  Lauren Rosenthal, KUCB - Unalaska


IN BRIEF - First U.N. World Ocean Assessment (WOA) is now available for review

UNITED NATIONS
Saturday, January 24, 2015

The first World Ocean Assessment (WOA) is now available for review until 6 February 2015 at review.globalchange.gov.

As reported by the WOC in 2013, the inaugural U.N. WOA is the first of a regular process for global reporting and assessment of the state of the marine environment, including socioeconomic aspects.

The WOA includes more than fifty subjects grouped within four main themes:

  • ? Marine environment and understanding the ocean’s role in the global integrated Earth system
  • ? Food security and food safety
  • ? Marine biological diversity
  • ? Human activities that influence the ocean or are influenced by the ocean

It is important for the WOA to include input from the ocean business community, especially in relation to the assessment themes on human activities.

The first WOA report will include a technical summary showing interdisciplinary linkages between human impacts, ecosystem services, species, and habitats. The WOA report does not appraise marine policy and governance.

To participate in the review process, visit review.globalchange.gov, register for an account (or log-in if you already have one), read the "Guidance for Contributors," then choose the chapter(s) you are interested in and submit your review(s) according to the instructions. Chapters are approximately 15 pages long.

The WOA review is open to the international community. Members of the international community are welcomed and encouraged to review and submit comments on the WOA chapters using the U.S. process outlined above – especially if their governments are not running a domestic process.

Contact Kelly Kryc at krycka@state.gov with any questions.


IN BRIEF - Jellyfish 'can sense ocean currents' - BBC Video

UNITED KINGDOM
Saturday, January 24, 2015

Jellyfish can sense the ocean current and actively swim against it, according to a study that involved tagging and tracking the creatures.

The research, by an international team, could help scientists work out how jellyfish form "blooms".

These blooms may comprise between hundreds and millions of jellyfish, and can persist in a given area for months.

It remains unclear just how the jellyfish sense changes in water, the paper in Current Biology journal says.

The scientists, including researchers from Swansea University and Deakin University in Warnambool, Australia, tagged 18 large barrel jellyfish (Rhizostoma octopus) in the Bay of Biscay, off the coast of France.

The team caught the jellyfish and fitted them with loggers that measured acceleration and body orientation.

Lead researcher Prof Graeme Hays from Deakin University said it was "really easy" to attach the tags. "We loop a cable tie around the peduncle that joins the swimming bell to the trailing arms," he explained.

"It takes seconds, and the tag stays on indefinitely."

At the same time, the researchers used floating sensors to monitor and measure the ocean currents.

Source: Victoria Gill/Science reporter, BBC News - Full story here


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IN BRIEF - Lobster marketing board meetings provide 'good feedback'
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IN BRIEF - Ban on new aquaculture projects was imposed to give time for possible settlement over SMP dispute
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IN BRIEF - Icicle Seafoods is up for sale
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