Paul Shively, campaign manager and fisherman. Nice ling Paul!

Interesting thing happened to me yesterday.  I was contacted by the Pew Pacific Fish Conservation Campaign.  What you may ask is that?  I was wondering the same thing and went about finding out.  I’m familiar with the Pew Charitable Trust, primarily in regards to the work that they do around understanding the use and impact of the internet (work stuff).  The trust was setup to do research to inform public policy.  Little did I know they are also doing ocean conservation work, AND they are interested in getting the point-of-view of fishermen.  In fact, they fish too!

The nuts and bolts of their work is to protect our bait.  They want to keep baitfish that aren’t currently being used in commercial fishing operations (mostly for stuff like fertilizer and pet food), off limits to future use for these purposes.  When I went to NY and fished for striper, I found out about the problems they were having getting their primary bait, menhaden aka bunker.  The stripers follow the bunker schools.  Nuff said?  The Pew PFCC work is to inform the Pacific Fisheries Management Council (PFMC, they manage the West Coast fisheries: WA, OR, CA) and urge them to adopt a holistic, “ecosystem based management” approach to their fishery management by also protecting baitfish and not just the target species we go after.  Makes sense to me.  Here’s a brief position paper.

The PFMC thinks that Pew folks may have a valid point.  They are meeting this week in Costa Mesa to discuss West Coast fishery managment.  On their agenda is more fact finding on the  details of ecosystem based management.   The Pew folks want to solicit input from fishermen to bolster their case for the holistic approach.  They asked me to give input and also to get other fishermen to chime in.  On Sunday, time has been set aside for public comment.  If you can’t make it live, you can send in commentary via email.  There is also a reception Friday night if you are interested.  All are welcome.  See the details below.

  • Public comment before the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC)
What: Tell the PFMC directly how important it is to preserve the forage fish stocks that the rest of the food chain relies on to thrive.
When: Sunday, November 6, 2011
Contact Ashley Lautzenhiser for specific time and full details
Hilton Orange County
3050 Bristol Street
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
  • Email comment to the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC) 
What: If you can’t make it to the meeting on November 6th, you can send the Council a comment via email.
When: As soon as possible
If you’d like more information or guidance on writing an effective message, contact Ashley Lautzenhiser.
  • Pew’s Pacific Fish Conservation Campaign Reception
What: An opportunity for conservation-minded fishermen to mix and mingle with key decision-makers in West Coast fishing policy.  This will be an informal function and a chance to learn more about the key role forage fish play in the Pacific food web.
When: Friday, November 4, 2011
6:00-8:00 pm
Hilton Orange County
3050 Bristol Street
Costa Mesa, CA 92626


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