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NOAA NMFS creating a River Herring Technical Expert Working Group

NOAA Fisheries, to follow up on their August 9, 2013 determination that a threatened or endangered listing under the ESA is not warranted at this time, is beginning work on a conservation plan for the two species.  The first step is to convene a 'Technical Expert Working Group' composed of researchers and managers from the entire geographic range of the species.

The first meeting of this group will be held on March 27, 2014.  The main goal is to set up the structure of the TEWG, but the meeting is open to the public and there is time on the agenda to accept public comment.  Check out the website below for updates:

http://www.mafmc.org/council-events/2014/river-herring-technical-wg

Abigail Franklin Archer

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Do you want to serve on the River Herring and Shad Advisory Panel?

The Mid Atlantic Fishery Management Council is accepting applications for the new River Herring and Shad Advisory Panel.

Applications are due by midnight on February 28th.  Application Instruction Are HERE

The Council is soliciting applications from qualified individuals to serve on its newly-formed river herring and shad advisory panel (AP). Advisors will assist in the development of management measures to support the conservation of river herring (alewives and blueback) and shad (American and hickory) populations.

A first-ever incidental catch cap for river herring and shad catch in the Atlantic mackerel fishery will be implemented in early this year. A Council River Herring and Shad Committee will oversee efforts to improve the information about how the catch cap should be set. The committee will also investigate other opportunities for the Council to engage in river herring and shad conservation. The advisory panel will provide stakeholder input to the Committee and the Council on these and other river herring and shad issues.

Members of the Council's eight advisory panels include commercial and recreational fishermen, dealers and processors, non-governmental organizations, scientists, and members of the public. Most of the Council's advisory panels meet 2-3 times per year. Members are compensated for travel and per diem expenses for all meetings. All interested stakeholders are encouraged to apply.

 

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2013 Annual Meeting Summary

Fifty people attended the third annual meeting of the River Herring Network on October 24, 2013 in Buzzards Bay. Participants represented 19 towns, 2 state agencies (Division of Marine Fisheries (DMF) and Division of Fisheries and Wildlife), the federal agency NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service, and 5 non-profit organizations. Two representatives of the Massachusetts Bays Program also attended.

Five speakers gave power point presentations on the topics of bycatch of river herring in the Atlantic Herring fishery, updates on local, state and federal efforts to manage river herring populations, the river herring enforcement activities of the MA Environmental Police, and DMF's 2013 efforts to monitor using video counts.

The meeting also featured a panel discussion with members of town herring committees. Five people representing the Middleboro-Lakeville Herring Fisheries Committee, the Westport Fish Commission, the Town River Fisheries Committee of Bridgewater & West Bridgewater and the non-profit organization Alewives Anonymous discussed the origins and operations of their groups and shared their opinions on the challenges and benefits of managing their herring runs.

The powerpoint presentations and notes from the meeting are available at the link below. http://riverherringnetwork.com/about-us/annual-meeting.html

If you have ideas for activities you would like to see happen in 2014, or would like to join the River Herring Network Steering Committee, please send an email through the "Contact Us" tab on the website.

Abby Franklin Archer

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Dam removal on the Jones River

In 2011 the Jones River Watershed Association and many partners removed the Wapping Rd dam on the Jones River in Kingston.  Among the many reasons to remove the dam was the desire to restore passage for river herring, eels, and resident species.  The Association just produced a 10 minute video about the dam removal and the video monitoring that was conducted afterwards.  Check it out!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3RrS4VoV4ZI