Commercial Fishing Organizations Oppose Cashes Ledge and the New England Canyons be designated a National Monument

On September 18th the Massachusetts Lobstermen’s Association along with 8 other commercial fishing organizations signed and sent a letter to President Obama opposing the potential designation of the Cashes Ledges and the New England Canyons as a National monument.

Dear Mr. President;

The Massachusetts Lobstermen’s Association along with the following organizations: Atlantic Offshore Lobstermen’s Association, Maine Lobstermen’s Association, Downeast Lobstermen’s Association, Maine Lobstermen’s Union, Stellwagen Bank Charter Boat Association, Rhode Island Lobstermen’s Association, Gloucester Fisheries Commission and the American Bluefin Tuna Association (Organizations); collectively represent an estimated 10,500 commercial and charter fishermen from New Jersey to the Canadian Maritimes. Collectively, our Organizations are greatly concerned and strongly oppose the proposal put forth by environmental organizations to have Cashes Ledge and New England Canyons designated National Monuments. Read More here.

Massachusetts Lobster Day is October 8, 2015

It is official, Governor Baker signed a State Proclamation declaring October 8th to be “Lobster Day” here in the Commonwealth.  This proclamation will set in motion a media campaign promoting lobster here in Massachusetts when the commercial lobster industry is in full swing.  We are also looking forward to celebrating “Lobster Day” at the State House, from 11-2pm, which gives the fishermen a chance to meet with their legislators about important issues on and off the water.  Also attending the celebration at the State House will be representatives from the New England Aquarium and the Division of Marine Fisheries.   For more information please call the MLA office 781-545-6984

The Massachusetts Lobstermen’s  Association would like to thank Governor Baker, Lt. Governor Polito and Secretary Beaton for signing the Proclamation along with State Representative Jim Cantwell and his staff for their help in making this happen.

Lobster Day 2015

Fall Trawl Survey 2015 Update

September 25, 2015
Each spring and fall, MarineFisheries conducts trawl surveys throughout Massachusetts coastal waters. These surveys have been conducted each May and September since 1978, and are used to determine the condition of fish stocks, evaluate how construction activities affect fishing and the environment, and how best to manage fisheries and protect fishery resources. Check back here to see where the trawl survey has been completed.

Fall 2015 CCB to ECC 17 SeptDONE Fall 2015 MBay to NH 15 Sept


June 4, 2015 – The NOAA Fisheries sponsored informational meeting held Thursday night at their Gloucester facility did nothing to alleviate lobstermen’s deeply held concerns over the NOAA observer-spy program.

The lobstermen’s greatest concern is safety; safety for their crew, the observer-spy, and for themselves, along with the liability issues and lawsuits that will fall squarely on their shoulders when the accidental injury or drowning invariably occurs.  The financial burden will be huge because of the adjusted insurance rates and the fact that the boats will now be forced to carry expensive safety equipment; combined costs in the tens of thousands of dollars. The observer-spies carry sleeping bags, pillows, personal coolers, measuring boards, baskets, and buckets.

Why is the Council Developing this Amendment?

April 1, 2015 – The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is required by the Magnuson-Stevens fishery Conservation and Management Act to periodically revise and update habitat management measures.  The Council must review essential fish habitat (EFH) designations, as well as any rules in place that minimize adverse fishery effects on EFH to the extent practicable and must identify other actions that encourage conservation and enhancement of fish habitat.  The Omnibus Habitat Amendments 2 addresses these requirements.

As part of the Amendment, the Council intends to update its EFH designations, potentially designate Habitat Areas of Particular Concern (HAPCs) and Designated Habitat Research Area (DHRAs), improve and reduce impacts on spawning groundfish and their spawning activity.  The Proposed DHRA is located in RED on the map above.

Revised Management Plan for Large Whales 12-11-14

On December 11, 2014  NOAA Fisheries announced final revisions to the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan.
Based on input from the state of Massachusetts, lobster fishermen and other stakeholders, the size of an area scheduled to be closed in 2015 will be expanded by approximately 912 square miles. The closure start date will be shifted from January to February. By expanding the area, whales will be protected. By shifting the start date to February 1, 2015, the fishing industry will be able to continue fishing through the lucrative holiday season. Other measures were implemented to ensure state and federal regulations were consistent.   NMFS Whale Plan update 2014-29195_PI  MA restricted area chart


Fishery Council Approves Actions To Protect Declining Cod

logo nefmc

Newport, RI – November 21, 2014  The following was released by the New England Fishery Management Council:  Responding to scientific information that gulf of Maine cod, an inshore stock of fish that has been harvested by local fishermen for generations, has declined to historic low levels, the New England Fishery Management Council (Council, NEFMC) last week voted on new fishing rules to remedy the problem.

While emergency measures put in place last week by NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service will likely remain in effect until April 30, 2015, the council’s intent is to replace the agency’s restrictions with those listed beginning on May 1, 2015, the start of the next fishing year. Read more here. NEFMC GOM COD

The MLA supports the Division of Marine Fisheries request to national marine fisheries service for exemptions and modifications on whale plan.

The Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries (DMF) submitted its request for Exemptions and Modifications to the Whale Plan on August 18th after several meetings with the MLA and industry members to encompass all the industries requests and concerns from across the Commonwealth. The DMF’s letter is following this article for your review. (more…)