Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Daunting Calculus for Maine Shrimpers as Entire Season Is Lost -

High Roller, a Port Clyde dragger
Port Clyde Fresh Catch is the brand of one of the last dragger fleets on the coast of the Gulf of Maine.  And that handful of boats is grounded now because the winter shrimp fishery is closed by government order.  I've told the story of Waiting for the Margaret E, to buy shrimp right off the boat.  Now climate change is threatening that stock - actually interfering with reproduction, the Times reports. - gwc

Daunting Calculus for Maine Shrimpers as Entire Season Is Lost -
by Jess Bidgood
“I can honestly say it was the worst catch that I’ve ever seen in my career,” said Mr. Cushman, 51, who has captained a boat for more than 30 years. “I was calling people and saying, ‘Let’s shut this fishery down, this is stupid.’ ”
Regulators recently did just that, closing the 2014 Gulf of Maine shrimping season — which, in a normal year, might have run from December through the spring — to give the supply time to recover. The unusual step has brought some hope to Mr. Cushman and to other fishermen and processors whose livelihoods depend in part on the shrimp’s making a comeback, even as they wonder how to weather this season, and perhaps longer, without it. But others say closing the season completely will deal too heavy a blow to the tiny, specialized market, eroding another part of New England’s imperiled fishing economy.

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