HYANNIS, MA – John Bullard, National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) Northeast regional administrator, took a few minutes during the New England Fishery Management Council’s Sept. 24-26 meeting here to highlight the important contributions to the region’s economy of the scallop and lobster fisheries, as well as the surprising growth of aquaculture.
Bullard distributed a handout titled “Overview of 2012 Fish Landings, Northeast US,” which he said was for “discussion purposes only” and wasn’t meant to be used as any kind of official statistics sheet. It ranked the region’s top-producing states, fishing ports, and species, all by dollar value first and then tonnage, to provide a broad overview of each port’s status.
“I had this put together because I wanted to get a sense of perspective for my own benefit,” Bullard said. “And I want to draw your attention to a couple of things.”
First, he said, “What is pretty obvious here is the dominance of New Bedford, which, at $407 million, exceeds the other nine top-value ports combined.”
In fact, the dollar value of landings in New Bedford alone came in higher than all but two states in the
Northeast – Massachusetts, naturally, because it’s home to New Bedford, and Maine, which came in second because of its enormous lobster fishery.
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