Oregon Pink Shrimp Price Negotiations Canceled This Week
State-supervised price negotiations between shrimp fishermen and processors have been canceled this week and are likely postponed due to a lack of fishermen available. It would have been the first time in seven years that shrimpers and processors would have met to negotiate and settle on an ex-vessel price. Oregon Trawl Commission Director Brad Pettinger said fishermen's associations didn't have enough members to participate. Pettinger said that a little more advance notice of the negotiations cancellation could have helped fishermen's associations to recruit more members to participate in the price talks. Industry participants on both sides indicated they want to start the season on April 1.
The Northern Gulf of Maine area is now closed to scallop fishing, two months ahead of last season. Jennifer Goebel, a spokeswoman for NOAA’s Great Atlantic Region Fisheries Office in Gloucester, said Wednesday that the area is being closed down because vessels permitted specifically to drag for scallops in that area have reached their cumulative annual limit. The season in the northern Gulf of Maine opens each year on March 1.
In other news, a widespread outbreak of norovirus in British Columbia has forced the closure of seven coastal oyster farms in the province. The outbreak has sickened hundreds of consumers in B.C., Alberta, and Ontario. The cause of the norovirus has yet to be determined and government officials and scientists are examining a range of possibilities, including a sewage leak or perhaps an unusually cold winter that also meant less sunlight, which affected the oysters' ability to filter toxins.
Meanwhile, rising sea temperatures in the Bay of Fundy are blamed for an increasing number of sea lice outbreaks according to the Atlantic Canada Fish Farmers Association. In late July 2016, sea lice killed 252,000 Atlantic salmon at two Gray's Aqua group farms in Passamaquoddy Bay. Another 284,000 fish were pre-emptively killed to contain the sea lice outbreak.
Finally, Alaska's herring sac roe seine fleet in Sitka has landed about half the fishery's quota during second opener of the season this past Tuesday. ""Fishery participants should expect another fishery on Friday, March 24, depending on results of roe sampling, vessel and aerial surveys," and ADF&G herring biologists said.
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