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#07-22-2013 - ComFish News Roundup

Kenai River salmon deserve better than self-interest gutting the public good
Taken on a quick day trip to the Kenai Penisul...
Taken on a quick day trip to the Kenai Penisula, south of Anchorage, Alaska in June 2008. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Bob Shavelson
July 21, 2013
There’s been a loud, angry and often uninformed debate over salmon habitat protection in the Kenai Borough for the past couple years, and if we hope to protect our fisheries in the coming years, it’s important to understand some basic issues. In 2011, the Kenai Borough Assembly voted 7-2 to protect the vital habitat corridors along our lakes and streams that sustain our wild salmon runs. This vote recognized that all salmon habitat is important, and it extended and expanded earlier ordinances already on the books, to include remaining salmon streams and lakes in the borough. A small but vocal group of so-called property rights advocates, however, grabbed the salmon habitat ordinance as a symbol of....

Setnetters sue for extra fishing hours

Posted: July 18, 2013 - 7:59pm  |  Updated: July 20, 2013 - 3:40pm
By Rashah McChesney
Peninsula Clarion
A coalition of commercial fishermen have sued the Alaska Department of Fish and Game over its management of the 2013 sockeye run and requested that the court compel the Fish and Game commissioner to allow up to 51 hours of extra fishing periods for Upper Cook Inlet setnetters. In its 19-page lawsuit the Cook Inlet Fisherman’s Fund — a commercial fishing advocacy group — accuses....

Originally published July 21, 2013 at 7:51 PM | Page modified July 21, 2013 at 10:55 PM
Fish-ear bones offer clues to health of ocean, species
Tiny ear bones of fish tell a big story about the environment.
Seattle Times
By Sarah Zhang
Seattle Times staff reporter
A tiny white sliver inside the heads of fish could hold evidence of a century’s worth of humans wrecking the environment: atomic bombs, overfishing, even climate change. Fish ear bones, also known as otoliths, are like tree rings for the ocean. A layer of calcium carbonate laid down each year offers a snapshot of both the fish’s yearly growth and its surrounding ocean conditions. The University of Washington’s Burke Museum has been transferring and cataloging 2 million pairs of otoliths, representing some 80 species. Scientists hope this collection, gathered over the past half-century, will help them track the health of fish populations and ocean conditions up and down the West Coast. The otolith collection, dating to the 1960s, had been sitting in an old Sand Point hangar.......

24 years after Exxon Valdez, pigeon guillemot still 'not recovering'
Workers using high-pressure, hot-water washing...
Workers using high-pressure, hot-water washing to clean an oiled shoreline (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Laurel Andrews
July 21, 2013
Scientists are hoping to boost dwindling pigeon guillemot populations in Prince William Sound, the last species of seabird listed as “not recovering” after the Exxon Valdez oil spill, more than 20 years after the oil tanker dumped more than 10 million gallons of crude oil into the waters of Alaska's Prince William Sound. In 2008, around 100 of the seabirds were estimated to inhabit a cluster of islands called the Naked Island group, the animal's primary breeding grounds in the Prince William Sound. That's a decline of 90 percent since 1989. Now, U.S. Fish and Wildlife hopes to locally eradicate one of the pigeon guillemot’s top predators, the American mink, in order to....

July 21, 2013
Senate fishing aid bill would close local NOAA offices
From Staff and Wire Reports
Gloucester Daily Times
The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee bill that would provide for some $150 million to address economic fishery disasters and require NOAA to charter fishermen’s boats for cooperative stock assessment research would also shut down NOAA’s northeast regional headquarters in Gloucester’s Blackburn Industrial Park and fold its jobs and operations into smaller community-based offices across the region. The budget measure — backed last week....
Cutting-edge robot to ensure seafood quality
Monday, July 22, 2013, 02:30 (GMT + 9)
A groundbreaking Environmental Sample Processor (ESP) that identifies water microorganisms by analyzing their DNA is to be launched around Puget Sound, US. Its purpose will be to improve the safety of local seafood from naturally occurring threats. This new technology, developed by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Marine Research Institute, will revolutionize......