Fish industry wants early notice of cod ban
The Maine Department of Agriculture has notified the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Servi우리카지노ce that it plans to prohibit sales of commercially caught Maine Atlantic cod — a species that makes up less than 1 percent of Maine’s apronxcod population.
But many Maine residents have concerns about possible impacts to their health if cod is banned, says Ken Tocci, director of the Maine Department of Agriculture’s cod conservation office.
“We want people to know they’re going to get it, because it’s important that they’re keeping fish alive in Maine,” he says. “We can’t keep these fisheries where the population is on a downward spiral, where some people are sick. It’s got to have better conservation practices than what’s out there in these other places where people are sick.”
For example, Tocci says Maine is able to maintain a relatively healthy cod fishery even as cod catches have declined in recent years. In 2011, there were about 3.7 million Maine Atlantic cod — enough for just 4 percent of the state’s overall cod fishery, according to the state. But in 2013, that number hit 2.5 million.
That’s a big decline. The catch is down from 3.6 million in 2006, but it’s well above the 2.4 million the state reported in 2009 and 2.1 million in 2010. The annual decline has been steep — up from an average decline of about 1 percent from 1976 through 2010, the most recent year for which records were available.
That could lead to smaller fish populations as Maine’s cod population dwindles as new cod traps are used to catch the more powerful fish, Tocci says. Cod fishermen will use smaller traps, allowing fish to survive in fewer areas for longer, he says.
But some fishermen say the threat of losing out on a major fish market has kept their own population in check — at least temporarily. For years, they have been able to buy cod, which are often raised as eggs by Atlantic City w바카라orkers.
Chris Smith, the executive director of Seafood Maine, a group that advocates for Maine’s fish industry, believes that trend is changing.
“For the last couple years there’s been a change in the mindset and what we are seeing now is the industry’s interest in taking steps to keep Maine Atlantic cod on the shelf,” Smith says.
The issue has even gotten local elected officials engaged. In May, the U.S. Maine Legislature passed a law to prohibit sales of commerciall