Fishing safety seminar
ROCKPORT—The Maine Fishermen’s Forum is hosting a safety seminar on May 4. The seminar will be 90 minutes long and include several guest speakers.
“In the last fifteen months, Maine’s fishing community lost eight men to several fishing related tragedies. Commercial fishing is one of the most dangerous occupations in America,” the forum wrote on the event posting. “There are several simple precautions which dramatically improve your chances of surviving an accident at sea and coming home safely to your family.”
This roundtable discussion will be hosted by Maggie Raymond of Associated Fisheries of Maine and panelists include U.S. Coast Guard Commander Jason Boyer, Brian Smith, a commercial fishing vessel examiner and Mike Russo, a fishing accident survivor.
The forum will be held over Zoom at 5 p.m. Login information for the seminar can be found at the forum’s Facebook page.
Climate change consortium
WOODS HOLE, MASS.—The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution launched a consortium last week that will focus on “advancing knowledge of the ocean’s critical role in combating climate change as well as developing new solutions at the intersection of oceans and climate.”
The Massachusetts-based institution partnered with Analog Devices Inc., a semiconductor company, to jumpstart the Ocean and Climate Innovation Accelerator consortium, the school announced last week.
“Oceans are among our most important defense mechanisms against a warming planet – yet their ability to continue to play this critically important role is being threatened by the effects of climate change,” Vincent Roche, the CEO of Analog Devices, said in a statement. “Through the Ocean and Climate Innovation Accelerator, we are committed to engaging ADI’s engineers and technologies to advance knowledge of the oceans in order to gain a better understanding of how oceans are impacted by climate change and to develop solutions to restore ocean health.”
Analog Devices has committed $3 million over three years towards the consortium.
The consortium is designed to focus on the development of the “networked ocean,” which will place sensors across oceanographic environments to continuously monitor conditions to inform business and policy decisions.
It will also establish a grant program and give out seed-funding and aid to projects that are already underway.
Electronic fishing logbook
AUGUSTA—With participation in the state’s volunteer angler logbook program lagging in recent years, the Department of Marine Resources has rolled out a new electronic logbook to try and boost participation.
While largely aimed to help collect data on striped bass, the logbooks can be used for any species of saltwater fish. Data points include length, catch and effort data. The striped bass data is submitted to the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, which oversees the coast’s bass populations.
The number of anglers who have been using the logbooks has shrunk significantly, from 130 anglers at the program’s peak in 2005 to just 47 in 2020.
“What’s nice about the electronic survey is if you go out fishing in an area where there’s no cell service or internet, you can still enter your data into your smart device or when you get back home you can use your computer,” said Victoria Batter, a staff member with DMR, during a striped bass stakeholders’ meeting on April 21.
The electronic logbook, an app run by Survey123, is new in 2021.
“Hopefully this will be a way to increase participation,” said Megan Ware, DMR’s director of external affairs.
More information and how to download the app can be found at maine.gov/dmr/recreational-fishing/logbook.html.