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#01-29-2014 - ComFish News Roundup

High Tech Trackers Gather Info On Cook Inlet Kings, Reds
By Johanna Eurich, KDLG - Dillingham | January 28, 2014 - 5:21 pm
The Alaska Board of Fish will begin deliberations on the Cook Inlet fisheries in Anchorage next week. One of the more difficult issues before the board is the declining King salmon runs and demands by sports fishing interests to shut down the commercial catch of reds to let every precious king into the Kenai River system. In Cook Inlet, the  statewide decline of King Salmon has raised the long running Cook Inlet Fish Wars between commercial and sports fishermen to a fever pitch. Last summer east side setnetters became the latest casualty as their fishery was shut down by a fish board dominated by sports fishermen. In the middle of that battle, working almost unnoticed was a group of scientists wielding...

Alaska dipnetters' share of red salmon nosedived last summer, but further cuts proposed 
Craig Medred
Alaska Dispatch
January 28, 2014
As the Alaska Board of Fisheries heads towards its end-of-January meeting amid a drone of complaints that the Kenai River dipnet salmon fishery is out of control, new catch figures from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game indicate dipnetters last summer really didn't catch diddly-squat. The official harvest is pegged at 347,222 red, or sockeye, salmon. That's an average of fewer than 10 sockeye per permit holder, and only about two-thirds of the 2012 and 2011 catches. Dipnetters were not allowed to keep king salmon in 2013 because of a weak run, although the...

The Great China Geoduck Ban Mystery
February 1, 2014
By Michael A. Moore
China's ban on the importation of bivalves originating from the US West Coast could not have come at a worse time for the commercial producers and harvesters of oysters, clams and geoducks – especially geoducks. Notice of the Chinese prohibition was received by NOAA's Seafood Inspection Office in mid-December – just in time to affect the geoduck harvest intended to supply the peak Chinese New Year market in China, when prices skyrocket. NOAA estimates it will take at least two or three months to overcome the prohibition on US origin bivalves. By that time, China's New Year celebrations will be memories. Meanwhile, back in the USA, shellfish farmers and harvesters, scientists, and government officials are mystified by the ban and the little bit of information they have been given as justification for...

NIOSH Takes On Injuries in the Fishing Fleet
By Lauren Rosenthal
Tuesday, January 28 2014
For more than 20 years, NIOSH has been working to prevent accidental deaths in the fishing industry. Now, these safety experts are tackling injuries -- the kind fishermen are used to getting every season. As KUCB's Lauren Rosenthal reports, that might make this a tougher problem to solve.....

Jan. 28, 2014 6:44 PM ET
Navy plans public hearing on Ketchikan facility
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — There are no significant changes planned to the Navy's only West Coast facility that measures underwater sounds made by submarines. However, the U.S. Navy still must file a draft Environmental Impact Statement on the...
Fishing for an Iowa market
A man who grew up in Iowa and found his niche catching and selling salmon in Alaska is hoping to grow the demand for salmon in Iowa.
Jan. 28, 2014
Picture one of those Family Circus cartoons that show little Billy’s very circuitous path to anywhere at all with a fat, black, dashed line that always ends up — much later — back where he started. That gives you a pretty good idea of Tony Neal’s life. Neal’s dashed line started in Des Moines, and 70ish years later, it led him back here, much like the wild salmon he fishes for swim back to their natal river. Neal, the founding owner of Popsie Fish Company, still calls Homer, Alaska, home, but he heads this way frequently to spread the good word about his wild-caught salmon. He’s determined to show Iowans what fresh salmon really is. “Catching salmon is a lot easier than selling it,”....

Fuel vents closed, spill contained from sunken tug
by Shady Grove Oliver, KSTK News
January 28, 2014 3:00 pm
The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation and the US Coast Guard are still monitoring the site where a tug boat sank and leaked diesel fuel near Wrangell last week. KSTK’s Shady Grove Oliver has this update on the spill response effort....

F/V Optimus: New 58-Foot Combination Boat for West Coast Fisheries
February 1, 2014
Hitting the Southeast tanner fishery this month is a shiny new 58-foot by 24.5-foot combination boat built for John Barry, of Sitka, Alaska. The hull and interior of the new boat were built by Northern Marine, a luxury yacht firm in Anacortes, Washington, and finished by owner John Barry and George Hooper, of Hooper Marine. The new boat was constructed of vacuum-infused fiberglass, chosen for its unmatched strength and low maintenance, in a mold design by yacht designer George Rodden. Even though Optimus is a workboat, her yacht builder origins show in the clean lines and flawless fiberglass work. The hull of the new boat is non-cored monolithic vacuum infused polyester. The keel of the new boat is a stout 3-inches of....

WHOI Scans Ocean for Fukushima Radiation
Posted by Eric HaunTuesday, January 28, 2014
With concern among the public over the plume of radioactive ocean water from Fukushima arriving on the West Coast of North America and no U.S. government or international plan to monitor it, a new project from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) is filling a timely information gap. Just two weeks after launching the crowd sourcing campaign and citizen...

6:58 PM TUE JANUARY 28, 2014
Feds Declare Salmon Fishery Disaster For Washington Tribes
The U.S. Secretary of Commerce has declared the Fraser River sockeye salmon run a “fishery disaster” for nine tribes and non-tribal fishers in Washington state. The Fraser River empties out near Vancouver, British Columbia. The sockeye salmon from that river are a key resource for the state and tribal fishing industries in Washington. The Fraser River sockeye salmon runs are worth more than $4 million each year, and they’ve been in decline for 30 years. The fishery was closed altogether in 2013. Fisheries managers blame the decline on poor ocean conditions, warm river ...

Fishing Groups Ask for Emergency Steps to Save Salmon
by Dan Bacher
Tuesday Jan 28th, 2014 9:32 AM
Four fishery conservation groups have asked state and federal fishery and water officials to convene an urgent meeting to save California Central Valley Chinook salmon runs from the drought. “We have a potentially dire situation in which a large percentage of 2013 Central Valley salmon may be lost if no action is taken,” said Bill Jennings, Executive Director of the California Sportfishing Protection Alliance. “Salmon have been suffering from a manmade drought for decades and this years’ lack of rainfall exacerbates the problem. We’re calling on the state and federal ....

Fishosophy: Overfished or Depleted?
Nils Stolpe
27 Jan 2014
Contrary to what might have been true when Shakespeare had Juliet speak those words in the 1590s, how things are called is far from meaningless today. This is particularly so due to the increasingly pervasive and influential social media driven by sound bite journalism, text messages maxing out at 255 characters and Tweets at 140. When so much of contemporary communication and contemporary thought is dependent on so few words, those words, their exact meaning and their precise use have become critically important....

January 29, 2014
Fishing stakeholders' focus shifts from rules to survival
By Sean Horgan
Staff Writer
Paul J. Diodati knew he was venturing into something of a maelstrom when he traveled to Gloucester on Monday night to listen to the concerns of local fishermen and stakeholders, while offering some fashion of a state of the state fisheries assessment at the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries offices on Emerson Avenue.....

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