January 23, 2013

New assessments are bad news for NE fishermen

The Associated Press

BOSTON — The news continues to be terrible for New England fishermen hoping to avoid a huge reduction in their catch limits in 2013.

Reports from two separate December assessments of cod stocks in the Gulf of Maine and Georges Bank are providing more evidence of their poor condition.

In a press statement Tuesday, the New England Fishery Management Council said the assessments showed cod in the Gulf of Maine at among its lowest recent abundance. And it said the last above-average year for Georges Bank cod reproduction was 1991.

The council said possible cuts in catch limits include 61 percent for Georges Bank cod and 81 percent for Gulf of Maine cod.

Regulators are meeting later this month to decide on the cuts. Fishermen have said the reductions being considered will cause industry collapse.

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