June 25, 2014: At last week’s meeting of the New England Fishery Management Council, the industrial herring fishery brought forward a bad idea: let us catch more juvenile haddock. The fleet of midwater trawlers fishing for herring in New England waters claimed years ago that they had no interaction with groundfish species, and now they say that there is nothing they can do to avoid catching haddock in their enormous, small-mesh nets.
Herring, mackerel and other small schooling fish are food for the whole ecosystem, including marine mammals, birds, and larger fish like tuna and striped bass. But the expansion of industrial-scale fishing is jeopardizing these key prey species and the marine environments and coastal communities they support.
The Herring Alliance works to protect marine wildlife and ecosystems on the Atlantic coast. Join our efforts.
The Mid Atlantic Fishery Management Council has voted to sharply reduce the amount of river herring and shad that can be killed by the industrial trawl vessels targeting Atlantic mackerel, an important step in the recovery of these important but imperiled little fish.
Since its inception the Herring Alliance has worked to bring attention to the negative effects the industrial trawlers of the Atlantic herring fishing fleet have on our coastal ecosystems. In the past few weeks some media outlets have started to take notice. Here’s a roundup of recent coverage.