Tribe Bay Scallop Study Shows Sanctuaries Can Revive Fishery

Creating sanctuaries and aggressively managing the protection of juveniles are two of the low-cost ways towns can jump-start their bay scallop fishery, according to the results of a five-year study into how to promote the growth of bay scallops in local coastal ponds.

Oysters Galore in Tisbury Great Pond: Shellfish Biologists Rejoice at Comeback

Vineyard ponds may be in peril, but somebody forgot to tell that to the Tisbury Great Pond which is loaded with wild oysters this year, the biggest natural spawning of oysters in recent memory.

“It is huge,” said Rick Karney, who has been director of the Martha’s Vineyard Shellfish Group for over 30 years. “I’ve never seen anything like it,” Mr. Karney said.

Iclelandic Mussel Farmer Brings Success Story to Vineyard Waters

By MARK ALAN LOVEWELL

The seafood consumer loves to eat blue mussels. It’s an internationally consumed product that lends itself very well to modern day aquaculture, including most likely here in Vineyard waters. Last Wednesday, a top mussel grower from Iceland, Vidir Bjornsson, of Nordurskel, came to speak and share pictures of his young blue mussel farm at the Chilmark Public Library. His one-hour talk was devoted to sharing his success, his struggles and his technique.

Tribe Allows Use of Hatchery For Winter Flounder Project

The Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) has agreed to lease its shellfish hatchery on the shore of Menemsha Pond to the Martha’s Vineyard/Dukes County Fishermen’s Association for $100 to raise winter flounder. The partnership is part of a federally funded two-year $308,000 National Sea Grant project to find ways to restore one of the most troubled fish resources in Southern New England.

Seafood Shipper Uses Ice to Break Into Bigger, Fresher Local Fish Market

Fresh fish is landed daily at Menemsha and much of it is being shipped to the mainland by Alec Gale. With his operation set up in what was once a lobster shack, the 34-year-old is shipping more this summer than he has shipped before.

A key ingredient to his success is ice. He manufactures and sells ice by the bucket and fish box. Boats are loading up with his ice before they head out of the harbor, and they are coming back with boxes full of iced fish.

Commercial Scallop Season Begins

The commercial bay scallop season is open in all towns save Aquinnah, and as hardy shellfishermen don their orange and yellow foul weather gear, perhaps hoping for a small hedge against hard economic times, the early reports on the season are mixed.

Edgartown is having an average to healthy year, but the scallops coming out of Cape Pogue are small. Chilmark expects to have a short season this year. Sengekontacket remains mostly the steady domain of family fishermen (no dragging is allowed there). And the Lagoon Pond is hot.

Water Quality and Crack Staff Deliver Banner Crop of Shellfish

The Martha’s Vineyard Shellfish Group had one of its most productive summers, mass producing millions of baby quahaugs, bay scallops and oysters. And to top it all off, the shellfish hatchery produced twice the usual numbers of bay scallop seed.

If Life Gives You No Lobsters, Make Oysters the Aquaculture Way

M. Emmett Carroll Jr. has seen change on the waterfront, from the days when lobsters were bountiful to now when they seem scarce. He has kept his faith by dancing with new ideas, shifting his attention to raising oysters. He runs Menemsha Oysters, pretty much a one-man aquaculture operation which involves raising and harvesting some of the Island’s tastiest oysters.

Lobster Hatchery Rehab Is Approved

An overhaul of the shuttered state lobster hatchery in Oak Bluffs has been approved by the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries, and the commonwealth will now invest a significant sum of money to rehabilitate the facility for use by the Martha’s Vineyard Shellfish Group, Cape and Islands Rep. Timothy Madden announced yesterday.

Mr. Madden said the state DMF has agreed to invest at least $250,000 in the project in phases. Work began this week to replace the plumbing in the old hatchery that sits on the eastern side of the Lagoon Pond in Oak Bluffs.

Top Scientist Explains What to Expect When Expecting 50,000 Winter Flounder

Plans are under way to raise 50,000 juvenile winter flounder in Vineyard waters next year. The work on the two-year $308,000 National Sea Grant project has already begun but the biggest hurdle won’t happen for another year.

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