FishNews – October 24, 2018

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NOAA Fish News

October 24, 2018



Seafood Month Intro

Seafood Month Continues
October is National Seafood Month, and this week we’re celebrating the sustainability of U.S. managed fisheries.

Chris Brown

Sustainable Seafood: A U.S. Fisherman’s Perspective
Commercial fisherman Chris Brown has spent nearly his whole life fishing the waters of New England. See what he has to say about the current state of U.S. fisheries and why American seafood is one of the most sustainable natural resources in the world.

Canary Rockfish

Canary Rockfish: A Story of U.S. Fisheries Management
The complexity of the West Coast groundfish fishery—which includes more than 60 species of rockfish—presented a serious management challenge when one species, canary rockfish, was found to be overfished in 2000. Thanks to the stewardship of our fishermen who honored the recovery provisions, the canary stock was declared rebuilt in 2015—15 years ahead of schedule.

Barndoor skate

Fishermen Help Put Barndoor Skate Back on Menu
Last month, the directed fishery for barndoor skate reopened for the first time in 15 years. Much of the credit for rebuilding this species goes to the commercial fishermen who adhered to regulations and did not harvest barndoor skate when it was prohibited.

Aquaculture net pen

Aquaculture Allure
Did you know that seafood farming, if done responsibly as it is in the United States, is one of the most environmentally sustainable ways to produce protein? As we celebrate Seafood Month, learn more about the growing need for farmed seafood.


Common dolphins

List of Fisheries 2019 – Open for Public Comment
By November 23, please submit your comments on NOAA Fisheries’ proposed List of Fisheries for 2019, as required by the Marine Mammal Protection Act. The list reflects the most up-to-date information on interactions between commercial fisheries and marine mammals.


Flower Garden Banks

Marine Protected Areas Advisory Committee
The Department of Commerce seeks nominations for membership on the Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee. The Committee seeks to fill 11 seats with highly qualified non-federal scientists, resource managers, and representatives of other interests. The Committee will hold a public webinar on November 8 and nominations are due December 1.


National Wetlands Award

Nominations for Annual National Wetland Awards
Do you know someone who deserves special recognition for outstanding leadership and achievements in the conservation and restoration of America’s wetlands? NOAA Fisheries’ Office of Habitat Conservation, in partnership with the Environmental Law Institute and other supporting agencies, seeks nominations for the 30th Annual National Wetlands Awards Program. Nominations are due December 14.




Freeing Whale near Dutch

NOAA-Led Team Frees Whale Near Dutch Harbor
A NOAA-led team of marine mammal responders was able to free an entangled humpback whale early Saturday evening in Unalaska Bay, near Dutch Harbor. The whale had a tight wrap of line through the mouth and across its blowholes, and line and buoys around its tail.


West Coast


shellfish in hand

Remote Cameras Reveal Value of Shellfish Habitat
Researchers from the Northwest Fisheries Science Center and their collaborators placed remote, underwater cameras around shellfish aquaculture beds in Puget Sound to document the diversity of species that use this nearshore habitat. The camera project has given shellfish growers a chance to participate in the science and demonstrate the ecological value of shellfish beds.


Pacific Islands


Bigeye tuna illustration

Final 2018 U.S. Territorial Bigeye Tuna Limits
NOAA Fisheries published a final rule specifying the 2018 catch limits for longline-caught bigeye tuna in each of the Pacific U.S. territories (America Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands.) The territories are authorized to allocate a portion of this limit to U.S. longline fishing vessels in a valid specified fishing agreement with that territory.


West Hawaii coral reef

Celebrate International Year of the Reef
Stop by the NOAA booth at the 2018 Hawaii Fish and Dive Expo in Honolulu this weekend, October 27–28, to join us in celebrating the International Year of the Reef. Come chat with the Pacific Islands Regional Office staff to learn about Hawaii’s coral reef ecosystems, nearshore fishing guidelines, and the protected species that call these waters home.


Hooked monk seal

Monk Seal that Ingested Hooks Returned to Wild
Recently, NOAA Fisheries released a Hawaiian monk seal, Ka’ale (RH32), back to the wild after removing a large fishing hook from his tongue. NOAA and partners will continue to monitor Ka’ale for changes in his condition due to other, smaller hooks that remain in his stomach. Learn how fishermen can reduce the risks of hooking Hawaiian monk seals.




Florida draft update

Status Update on Florida Restoration Draft Plan
In September, the Florida Restoration Area trustees for the Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment released their Draft Restoration Plan 1 and Environmental Assessment. In light of the impacts of Hurricane Michael on our coastal communities and resources, the Florida trustees will need to gather more information on proposed projects in the Draft Plan. They will continue to accept public comments while they determine next steps.


Greater Atlantic


International Year of the Salmon

Launch Event for International Year of the Salmon
Next year is the International Year of the Salmon. NOAA Fisheries is participating in this international campaign, which aims to protect salmon—and the communities and cultures that depend on them—by bringing countries together to share knowledge, raise awareness, and take action. Join us on October 30 for a lecture launching the celebration at the New England Aquarium in Boston.


Chesapeake B-WET

NOAA Announces 2018 Chesapeake B-WET Grants
NOAA’s Chesapeake Bay Office announced the winners of the FY 2018 Chesapeake Bay-Watershed Education and Training (B-WET) grants. Approximately $2.6 million in grant funding will support outdoor and classroom learning for students and professional development for teachers through 24 projects in four Chesapeake Bay watershed states.


Milford collage

Milford Lab’s International Appeal
It may be a small facility in Connecticut, but NOAA Fisheries’ Milford Laboratory has an international appeal and reputation. Students, post-docs, and scientists from around the world spend time in Milford conducting research alongside the laboratory’s staff of biologists, microbiologists, chemists, ecologists, geneticists, and lab technicians. To dive deeper, read a profile of Julie Rose, research ecologist with the Aquasystems and Ecology Branch at Milford.


Red snapper charter vessels

Mid-Atlantic Council to Host Workshop on Enforcement in For-Hire Fisheries
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council will host a workshop in Philadelphia November 13–14 to identify issues related to law enforcement in for-hire fisheries and sale of fish by recreational anglers. The workshop is free and open to the public, but please pre-register.



October 25
Last day of Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council meeting in Mobile, Alabama.

October 26–27
Western Pacific Fishery Management Council meeting in Tumon, Guam.

October 27–28
NOAA booth celebrates International Year of the Reef at the 2018 Hawaii Fish and Dive Expo in Honolulu.

October 30
Lecture to kick off the International Year of the Salmon at the New England Aquarium in Boston.

November 1 and 9
Top NOAA leaders will conduct public conferences around the nation about the Department of Commerce 2018–2022 Strategic Plan.

November 5
Webinar on the proposed traceability program for U.S. farmed shrimp and abalone.

November 7–8
U.S. Aquaculture Innovation workshop and networking event in Baltimore, Maryland.

November 8
Public webinar hosted by the Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee about nominations for open seats.

November 13–14
Free workshop on law enforcement in federal for-hire fisheries, hosted by the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council in Philadelphia.

November 13 and 15
Two free Protected Species Safe Handling, Identification, and Release workshops in Florida and Louisiana.

November 13–16
United States–Japan Natural Resources Panel on Aquaculture Scientific Symposium in Mystic, Connecticut.

November 14
Annual public meeting, via webinar, of the Open Ocean Trustee Implementation Group for the Deepwater Horizon Natural Resource Damage Assessment.

November 15
Free Atlantic Shark Identification workshop in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.




October 29
Proposals due for 2019 Community-Based Marine Debris Removal grants.

October 30
Applications due for 2019 Species Recovery Grants to Tribes.

October 31
Proposals due for funding to document the distribution of surfclams in the U.S. Northwest Atlantic.

November 1
Applications due for 2019 Species Recovery Grants to States.

November 8
Nominations due for 11 seats on the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Advisory Panel.

November 12
Applications due to attend the U.S. Aquaculture–Gulf Coast Innovation workshop and networking event scheduled for February 2019.

December 1
Nominations due for membership on the Marine Protected Areas Federal Advisory Committee.

December 14
Nominations due for the 30th Annual National Wetlands Awards.


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