FishNews – May 16, 2018

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NOAA Fish News

May 16, 2018



Steller Sea Lion pups border

Endangered Species Day Is May 18
Endangered Species Day is an annual celebration and opportunity for people to learn about endangered and threatened species and what we can do to help them.  

Steller watch students

Endangered Steller Sea Lions Get a Closer Look From Online Citizen Scientists
Volunteers help process images of endangered Steller sea lions, enabling critical scientific analysis.

Sturgeon art

Endangered Species Day Events
NOAA’s Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office and Northeast Fisheries Science Center are hosting several Endangered Species Day events in May.


Large Marine Ecsoystems map

Join NOAA-Sponsored Online Course on Large Marine Ecosystems
NOAA Fisheries has collaborated with a global team of experts to create a free online course on the assessment and management of Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs). In this course, leaders and experts in a global movement to recover and sustain transboundary marine resources will introduce important concepts and key resources for ecosystem-based management in LMEs.




Sea Lion Mom and Pup

NOAA Warns: Don’t Shoot Seals or Sea Lions
NOAA reminds everyone that, except for subsistence harvest, it is illegal to harass, hunt, capture, or kill marine mammals under the Marine Mammal Protection Act. Under the MMPA, fishermen may deter non-ESA-listed marine mammals from damaging gear or catch so long as their actions do not result in serious injury or death. NOAA Fisheries is working on guidelines for safely deterring marine mammals.

Scientist Teacher SEE partnership

Connecting Students to Real-World Applications
A team of scientists and teachers in Juneau, Alaska, launched a new program to connect STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) professionals to local educators. A recent unit supported through this partnership brought NOAA and University of Alaska researchers to classrooms for a series of lectures, and middle school students participated in a mock fishery management meeting.


West Coast


Chinook salmon

Puget Sound Chinook – Open for Public Comment
By June 4, please submit your comments and any pertinent information that NOAA Fisheries can consider in conducting an environmental analysis of a proposed 10-year harvest plan for Puget Sound Chinook salmon, which are listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. The plan, developed by Washington State and Puget Sound area tribes, is a blueprint for all salmon fisheries in the Salish Sea and Puget Sound.


Pacific Islands


Pacific fishing vessel

Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Measures – Open for Public Comment
By May 25, please submit your comments on proposed regulations to implement recent decisions of the international Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission. Proposed measures include catch limits for the U.S. longline fleet operating in the western and central Pacific Ocean; fishing effort limits and restrictions on the use of fish aggregating devices for the purse seine fleet in those waters; and a prohibition on transshipments in the Eastern High Seas Special Management Area.




Elmer's Island Restoration

Elmer’s Island Access Project - Open for Comment
In response to public comments on their December 2017 Draft Recreational Use Plan, the Louisiana Trustee Implementation Group for the Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment released proposed modifications to the Elmer’s Island Access Project. Comments on the Elmer’s Island Project Modification will be accepted online until June 20 or in person at a public meeting in New Orleans on May 22.


Gulf Council logo

Gulf Council Seeks New Deputy Director
The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is seeking applicants for the position of Deputy Director. The Deputy Director serves as a member of the Council’s leadership team and assists the Executive Director in the operation of the Council office. Applications are due June 15.


Greater Atlantic


Buckets of Scallops

2018-19 Sea Scallop Research Set-Aside Awards
The Northeast Fisheries Science Center and the New England Fishery Management Council announced their selection of 15 projects for funding through the Sea Scallop Research Set-Aside Program. Projects will address research priorities established by the Council, with a particular focus on resource surveys.

Atlantic cod

Working Group Tackles Cod Stock Structure
The population of Atlantic cod in the Northwest Atlantic is actually made up of discrete stocks that differ in size, growth rate, and genetics. Monitoring and managing the cod population requires understanding the dynamics of each stock component. In February, NOAA Fisheries launched an international working group to study cod stock structure.


Partnership Education Program

Partnership in Education Program 10th Year
The Woods Hole Partnership Education Program, a summer internship program developed to help attract and retain a more diverse workforce, is entering its 10th year. The Northeast Fisheries Science Center’s Woods Hole Laboratory works with nearby marine institutions to mentor the students, who are recruited from groups that are underrepresented in marine and environmental sciences.

Marine Debris coordinator

Meet Our New Marine Debris Coordinator
NOAA’s Marine Debris Program addresses the serious issue of trash—from microplastics to abandoned vessels—in our oceans. Meet Demi Fox, the Marine Debris Program’s new Northeast Regional Coordinator. Demi works with regional partners on projects to clean up the coast and educate local students.


May 19
Endangered Species Day events at NOAA’s Woods Hole Science Aquarium in Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

May 20
Open House at the Northeast Fisheries Science Center’s Howard Marine Sciences Laboratory in Sandy Hook, New Jersey.

May 21
Free Protected Species Safe Handling, Identification, and Release workshop in Largo, Florida.

May 21–23
NOAA Fisheries’ Fish Program Passage Review in Silver Spring, Maryland, open to the public and accessible via webinar.

May 22
Public meeting on the Elmer’s Island Access Project, hosted by the Louisiana Trustee Implementation Group in New Orleans.

May 22–June 6
Five public hearings and one webinar on draft Coral Amendment 9, hosted by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council.

May 29 and June 12
Two informational webinars on federal for-hire permit holders, hosted by the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council.

May 31
Public webinar to collect comments on Reef Fish Amendment 49 (Sea Turtle Release Gear), hosted by the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council.

June 4
Fishing Families in Alaska Fisheries Workshop, hosted by the Alaska Fisheries Science Center, in Kodiak, Alaska.

June 4–11
North Pacific Fishery Management Council meeting in Kodiak, Alaska.

June 5–7
Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council meeting in Philadelphia.

June 7–13
Pacific Fishery Management Council meeting in Spokane, Washington.

June 11
Fishers Forum sponsored by the Western Pacific Fishery Management Council in Kahului, Maui.

June 11–13
Western Pacific Fishery Management Council meeting
in Wailea, Maui.

June 11–15
South Atlantic Fishery Management Council meeting in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

June 12–14
New England Fishery Management Council meeting in Portland, Maine.

June 18–21
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council meeting in Key West, Florida.


May 25
Applications due for seats on the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council’s Scientific and Statistical Committees.

June 15
Applications due for position of Deputy Director of the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council.

June 22
Nominations due for the 2018 Dr. Nancy Foster Habitat Conservation Award.


Federal Register Actions

Visit for a list of only those actions open for public comment. Scroll search for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

For a list of all daily actions, check the Federal Register online.

Corrections or technical questions should be sent to the FishNews Editor at