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Sat Dec 1, 2012, 04:57 PM

Maine shrimp industry in dire straits, prompting call for fishing moratorium


PORTLAND, Maine — Maine’s shrimp boats traditionally take to the waters of the Gulf of Maine the first week of December. But not this year. And not last year.

In fact, the Northern Shrimp Technical Committee of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission recommends that there not be a shrimp season at all this year


“Given the current condition of the resource (overfished and overfishing occurring) and poor prospects for the near future, the NSTC recommends that the Section implement a moratorium on fishing in 2013,” the report says. “If a fishery is allowed in 2013, the NSTC recommends a highly conservative approach … [including] starting the season after at least 50 percent of shrimp have hatched their brood. In recent years the midpoint of the hatch has been around Feb. 15.


“The problem for shrimp is that the water is too warm for them in that section of the Gulf of Maine,” she said. “They are a sub-Arctic species, and this is the southernmost part of their habitat. And for the shrimp here it’s a closed system. The only way out of it is through the southern and eastern parts of the Gulf, and those parts are the warmest parts.”


Maine shrimp were cheap (buck a pound) and tasty - gonna miss 'em

Deniers suck


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Reply Maine shrimp industry in dire straits, prompting call for fishing moratorium (Original post)
jpak Dec 2012 OP
freethought Dec 2012 #1

Response to jpak (Original post)

Sat Dec 1, 2012, 06:45 PM

1. I thought it was pretty much a local market

Gulf of Maine shrimp were a regular winter treat. They were fairly cheap, like the poster said, usally around a buck a pound. You could buy 5 pounds, cook them, eat what you wanted, then peel and freeze the rest. You would get them at the local fish/lobster stores or from trucks and vans on the roadside.
As far as I saw Maine shrimp was sold pretty much in Maine and didn't go beyond the coastal area very much. Those that I knew who fished them were lobstermen who were supplementing their income for the year. Could be the fleet for the shrimp was bigger than I thought. Locals just used to tell me that shrimp caught in the gulf of Maine were usally just for the local markets and there wasn't much demand for them elsewhere. That and the time of year in which they were harvested was problematic as well. Winter in the Gulf of Maine can be risky.

It's possible that there were foreign interests exploiting the shrimp as well.

Maine shrimp had a different flavor and texture than farmed shrimp or shrimp that comes out of the Gulf of Mexico. Still, they were good eating and they could be easily used for other recipes and dishes. They also were usually smaller.

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