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IN BRIEF - Long-term observations from Antarctica demonstrate erroneous conclusions

ANTARCTICA
Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Long-term observations from Antarctica demonstrate that mismatched scales of fisheries management and predator-prey interaction lead to erroneous conclusions about precaution

Low catch limits for forage species are often considered to be precautionary measures that can help conserve marine predators. Difficulties measuring the impacts of fisheries removals on dependent predators maintain this perspective, but consideration of the spatio-temporal scales over which forage species, their predators, and fisheries interact can aid assessment of whether low catch limits are as precautionary as presumed. Antarctic krill are targeted by the largest fishery in the Southern Ocean and are key forage for numerous predators. Current krill removals are considered precautionary and have not been previously observed to affect krill-dependent predators, like penguins. Using a hierarchical model and 30+ years of monitoring data, we show that expected penguin performance was reduced when local harvest rates of krill were ≥0.1, and this effect was similar in magnitude to that of poor environmental conditions. With continued climate warming and high local harvest rates, future observations of penguin performance are predicted to be below the long-term mean with a probability of 0.77. Catch limits that are considered precautionary for forage species simply because the limit is a small proportion of the species’ standing biomass may not be precautionary for their predators.

Authors: George M. Watters, Jefferson T. Hinke & Christian S. Reiss | Scientific Reports volume 10 | Article number: 2314 (2020) | Read full report here


IN BRIEF - International examples offer US a blueprint for aquaculture regulation in 2020

UNITED STATES
Wednesday, February 12, 2020

For many years, powerful corporations, assisted by the very U.S. agencies tasked with protecting and managing our ocean resources, have collectively been pushing for development of industrialized fish farms off the coasts of our shoreline communities. Our fisheries managers and other elected officials have done little to mitigate the looming environmental threats of such expansion. In many cases, they have overlooked those threats in an effort to increase opportunities for industrial aquaculture in U.S. waters.

Industrial fish farms, which hold many thousands of fish in giant net pens in the ocean, pump heavily processed feed, antibiotics and other chemicals into our waters. These water-borne factory farms unfairly compete with wild-caught fish at market and harm the ecosystem by allowing pesticides and high concentrations of untreated fish waste to flow from the net pens into our oceans. This is all in addition to the very real threat of industrially-farmed fish escaping these pens and outcompeting wild, native fish for food and mates, as we saw just a few years ago off the coast of Washington state.

Despite these serious risks, the Environmental Protection Agency, Army Corps of Engineers, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and National Marine Fisheries Service are allowing and even supporting development by corporations that push for bills and policies to fast-track these dangerous projects without proper environmental review or public input. Proposed bills like the 2018 Advancing the Quality and Understanding of American Aquaculture (AQUAA) Act would reduce transparency in the permitting process and ignore environmental impacts of new projects. Meanwhile, the federal agencies specifically tasked with protecting our oceans have churned out federal funding assistance to this industry and the Environmental Protection Agency is in the process of granting a Hawaii-based corporation approval to build a massive fish farm off the coast of Sarasota, Fla., all without meaningful public outreach or critical environmental review procedures.
 
Author: Hallie Templeton, senior oceans campaigner / Friends of the Earth | Read full story here

IN BRIEF - Lords EU Committee launches new inquiry on EU access to UK fisheries

UNITED KINGDOM
Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Today (Wednesday 12th), the House of Lords EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee will launch its new short inquiry on access to UK fisheries with a double evidence session.

At 10.30am the Committee will hear from:

  • Professor Richard Barnes, Associate Dean for Research, Hull University
  • Dr Christopher Huggins, Senior Lecturer in Politics, University of Suffolk
  • Andrew Oliver, Partner, Andrew Jackson.

Likely topics of discussion include:

  • What should the Government be aiming for in its negotiations on post-Brexit access to UK fisheries?
  • What legal constraints are there on the UK’s ability to restrict EU fishing access to the UK’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and the UK’s coastal waters from next year?
  • Are there other examples of the EU tying fishing access to overall trade in negotiations, as it is seeking to do with the UK?
  • Is it feasible for the Government to negotiate quota on the basis of zonal attachment, rather than relative stability? 
  • How will the UK’s approach need to change to ensure that any new agreement on EU access to UK fisheries is enforced?

At 11.45am the Committee will hear from:

  • Elspeth Macdonald, Chief Executive Officer, Scottish Fishermen’s Federation
  • Barrie Deas, Chief Executive Officer, National Federation of Fishermen's Organisations
  • Jeremy Percy, Chief Executive Officer, New Under Ten Fishermen's Association
  • Andrew Kuyk CBE, Chief Executive Officer, UK Seafood Industry Alliance.

Likely topics of discussion include:

  • Should the UK stop or reduce access by EU vessels to UK waters post-Brexit?
  • How strong a lever is the UK’s ability to grant or deny access to its waters?
  • Is there a risk of clashes in the water if the UK restricts EU vessels’ access?
  • What would be the impact on the fishing industry if trading fish products with the EU becomes more difficult or more expensive post-Brexit?
  • Do views on post-Brexit access to UK fisheries vary between the different regions and nations of the UK?

These evidence sessions, which are open to the public, will take place at 10.30am on Wednesday 12 February 2020 in Committee Room 2 of the House of Lords.


IN BRIEF - Samherji commentary release in relation to the new seizure of the vessel Heinaste

ICELAND
Wednesday, February 12, 2020

With reference to Samherji’s press release from February 6th about the group’s mission to fulfil all of its obligations in Namibia, Samherji believes it is important to disclose the following with reference to the renewed seizure of the vessel Heinaste on February 7th.

As previously stated Samherji has been divesting its operations in Namibia. At this point the group has limited remaining exposure to the country. Of the three vessels that have been fishing in Namibian waters over the past year, Geysir, Heinaste and Saga, only one remains in Namibia. This is the factory trawler Heinaste. The purpose in Heinaste remaining in Namibia was to conclude a charter or sale to local operators with the object of preserving the jobs of local fishermen. On Friday, February 7th, the police in Namibia seized the vessel again. 

“It is our view that the renewed seizure of Heinaste is wrongful under Namibian law and we will now take necessary legal steps in Namibia in court if necessary,” says interim CEO Björgólfur Jóhannsson.


IN BRIEF - Almost 250 artisanal boats will catch 571 tons of bluefin tuna in the Canary Islands

SPAIN
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

The central government assigns to the local fleet in 2020 those fishing rights for bluefin tuna, 30% more than in 2019, when they were not fully exhausted and reached 438 tons

The bluefin tuna fishery in the Canary Islands (scientific name Thunnus thynnus) will begin again next February 20 in marine waters of the Islands and international near the Archipelago. This is planned to order the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, as reflected in the draft resolution that will regulate that specific extractive activity in the Canary Islands.

In 2020, the share of bluefin tuna grows again and now reaches 571.4 tons, more than double that existing in 2018, then with only 255 tons, and 30% higher than the previous year, with a threshold of 438.5 tons, although this was not consumed in its entirety. This year, the 571.4 tons of bluefin tuna can be lifted to deck and unloaded up to 249 artisanal fisheries in the Canary Islands with a base port in the Islands and with licenses for minor arts or cane tuna vessels.

Source: The Agricultural Diary - Santa Cruz de Tenerife


IN BRIEF - Squid: less catch, better wages and imported 'rabas'

ARGENTINA
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

The squid, raw material that generates the well-known and exquisite rabas (battered squid tube ring), is located, comfortable, on the third step of the podium of the main products exported by the national fishing industry behind shrimp and hake, if we are guided by the currencies it generates, or hake and shrimp if we take into account the volume exported.

Last year, according to official numbers, 96 thousand tons were unloaded, 11% less than the 2018 discharges. Between January and November 84240 tons were exported, generating almost 210 million dollars. On the total map of fisheries exports, squid does not reach 15%. of the currencies obtained.

It is a fishery in which almost 70 vessels with exclusive squid fishing permission to operate in national waters participate. Of that total, most are boats of Spanish or Chinese companies, such as the last six permits that were released this season that began on January 10. Of these countries is also a good part of the foreign fleet that squid fishing on mile 201 illegally, not regulated or regulated. In many of them with slave labor on board.

Author: Roberto Garrone / El Marplatense 


IN BRIEF - Illegal fishing destabilizes Somalia's political stability

SOMALIA
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

A new study examines how illegal fishing damages Somalia's economy, exacerbates conflict and disrupts political stability. In Somali waters, illegal fishing is a widespread problem. It provokes clashes between foreign and national fishermen and destabilizes Somali life, according to a work by the journalist, Munyaradzi Makoni, for Haikaimagazine

For at least seven decades, foreign fishermen have harvested Somalia fish with little or no deterrence. The fighting intensified with the collapse of the government in 1991. As the civil war took hold and the warlords rushed to rule, the longest coast in continental Africa, with 3,333 kilometers, was suddenly unprotected.

Amid the power vacuum, illegal foreign fishermen entered and took millions of tons of fish. A new study, led by Sarah Glaser, interim director of Secure Fisheries, a project of the US non-profit organization One Earth Future. In the US, it shows that this fishing pressure undermines Somali coastal communities by boosting unfair competition and not managed by finite natural resources.

Illegal trawling near the Somali coast destroyed sensitive habitats, says Glaser. “And when illegal fishing abroad is neither reported nor regulated, it reduces fish stocks and undermines the Somali government's ability to establish sustainable management plans. Ultimately, this reduces economic security and internal livelihoods. "

Source: europaazul


IN BRIEF - Fishing well on cod in the Víkuráll Gully

ICELAND
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Brim’s fresher trawler Helga María is now on its way to begin a trip on fishing grounds off the south-west of the Reykjanes peninsula, and according to skipper Friðleifur Einarsson the previous trip was a good one.

We started in the Víkuráll Gully and were there the whole time, apart from 24 hours we spent on the Mountains down south,’ he said. The requirement for the trip was cod and redfish, and to search out saithe in amounts worth fishing.

‘There has been good fishing on cod in the Víkuráll Gully and there’s also some redfish there. We were getting both cod and redfish until we switched to the T90 codends, and after that we were catching virtually clean cod, which let us continue fishing.

He said that the decision was taken to finish the trip on the Mountains, where there’s the best chance of finding saithe and filling their redfish allocation for the trip.

‘There’s a storm forecast on the Westfjords grounds for the next few days, so we started this trip on the Mountains. The winter season is approaching, and that’s the time when we have often been able to get a decent shot of cod on the Eldey Bank in February,’ Friðleifur Einarsson said.

Source: Brim


IN BRIEF - ‘Budget neglected us’: Kerala's sardine fishermen allege as catch on the decline

INDIA
Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Over the year, the catch of oil sardine has dwindled, resulting in high prices and lowered consumer demand.

Sardine fishermen who were hoping for a relief package from the Kerala government were disappointed as their demands did not figure in the state budget presented by Finance Minister Thomas Isaac on Friday. In particular, sardine fishermen had sought a ‘fish famine’ package. The catch of oil sardine, a major source of income for fishermen in Kerala, has considerably reduced over the years. As a result, fishermen say that the price of sardines has shot up from Rs 50 per kilogram to Rs 200 recently.

Speaking to TNM, Matsya Thozhilali Aikya Vedi president Charles George said that the sardine decline had badly affected the fishing community since 2012. “We are talking about the traditional fishing community. Sardine was the major source of income for them. Prior to 2012, the yearly availability of sardine was more than 3,50,000 tonnes. In 2016, it came down to 65,000 tonnes and now it is around 75,000 tonnes. Its decline has caused a major set back to the community,” he said.

Author: Haritha John/thenewsminute.com | Read full story here


IN BRIEF - The missing crewman of an Argenova squid jigging vessel is not found

ARGENTINA
Monday, February 10, 2020

On Friday the disappearance of a fishing crewman who was 200 miles from the coast at the height of Comodoro Rivadavia was reported. The PNA flew over the area and highlighted a coast guard, requesting collaboration from other fishing vessels operating nearby.

ederal Judge of First Instance of Comodoro Rivadavia, Eva Parcio, ordered Coast Guard personnel Fique (GC-27) to board the pit ship Hoyo Maru 37 (MN 022624) to collect testimonial statements seeking to clarify the circumstances, so far unclear, in which an Argenova fishing crewman disappeared last Friday.

From the paddock it was reported, that day after 15 hours, to the Naval Prefecture that the first 34-year-old machine officer Diaz disappeared from aboard the vessel so a search protocol was launched that It included aerial means and the concurrence of a coast guard to rake the area, while a statement was made to the fishing staff in order to establish under what circumstances the alleged fall of the crewman to the sea would have occurred. (Source: Revista Puerto)


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