Blog Archives

Atlantic Menhaden Technical Committee Meeting Minutes

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[Editor's Note: The recommendations of fisheries scientists play a critical role in determining fishing regulations. But unlike regulatory meetings of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, which are transcribed, the meetings of the scientific committees are undocumented -- accessible only by attendance. At the Public Trust Project, we make an effort to transcribe, as faithfully …

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No Records Kept: The Potomac River Fisheries Commission’s Mysterious History on Menhaden

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The Potomac River Fisheries Commission (PRFC) has no record of the votes it has made regarding Atlantic menhaden, the controversial forage fish that has been called “the most important fish in the sea” because of its contribution to the diets of dozens of ecologically significant fish, mammals, and shorebirds. PRFC Executive Secretary A.C. Carpenter confirmed …

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Menhaden Fishery in Graphics

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As the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission gears up to meet in early August, all eyes are once again turning to Atlantic menhaden, the forage fish that has been called “the most important fish in the sea.” Menhaden feeds commercially valuable predator fish like striped bass, weakfish, and bluefish, as well as marine mammals like …

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Atlantic Menhaden Fishery Gets Lowest Possible Grade

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A report released this week by the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership gives the Atlantic menhaden fishery a grade of “C,” the lowest score. The report analyzed reduction fisheries in the Atlantic and South America, and graded them in five different categories, including precautionary management, how well fisheries managers follow science advice, whether fishermen comply with regulations. …

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Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission Makes Important Changes to its Scientific Process

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The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) is taking steps to ensure greater transparency in its scientific committee meetings after industry consultants tried to dominate a subcommittee hearing in May in North Carolina. That meeting, which was reported by the Public Trust Project, included government scientists from state agencies as well as federal researchers who …

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Did Industry Consultants Hijack the Stock Assessment Process for Atlantic Menhaden?

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At a meeting this week in North Carolina, government scientists were largely silent on the question of how the Atlantic menhaden population should be assessed in 2012. Fishing industry consultants, on the other hand, dominated the process — so much so that some in attendance questioned whether efforts by industry representatives to steer the discussion …

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