Groundfish industry

Secretary of Commerce Proposes Even Stricter Groundfish Rules

Secretary of Commerce Proposes Even Stricter Groundfish Rules

By MARK ALAN LOVEWELL

Concerned about severe overfishing of key stocks in the waters off New England, the U.S. Secretary of Commerce on Tuesday stepped in to propose strict emergency measures to curtail overfishing this spring. The proposal supersedes measures enacted by the New England Fishery Management Council, the regional regulatory body that has struggled over the last year to meet a federal deadline for developing a sound plan to save the troubled fishery.

Scientists Study Groundfish Net by Net, Sifting the Sea in Pursuit of Knowledge

On an open sea deck, with the rolling waves of Georges Bank a mere eight feet away, Jon Brodziak cuts, and with tweezers takes a bone from each of the two inner ears of a haddock.

He places them in a small envelope for future study.

Then he does it again with another haddock. And again.

The bone is the otolith, which is used to tell the age of the fish; it is a far better measure than length.

Mr. Brodziak, along with several other scientists, is in the middle of a six-hour shift on the Albatross IV, in the pitch black night on the open ocean.

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