Monday, February 21, 2011

Better fishing

Better fishing
How can a fisherman make more money? By fishing less. This one has blogfish written all over it.

A new study says fishing is better when there are more fish in the water. No big surprise there, but I guess it's a big deal when this common sense idea is dressed up with lots of equations.

Is it going to matter? Will this study lead to better fishing policies? I doubt it, since we've known for a long time that overfishing is bad and yet it still happens. It is an advance to show scientifically that less fishing is more profitable for fishermen. But it won't solve most of our problems. Why?

Because most of our fishing problems are fights over who gets the fish. Until that's settled, few fishermen will quit racing to catch fish.

I don't mean to be cynical and pick on good research. It is a great advance to show conclusively that less fishing is better fishing. And I hope that this research is implemented by fishery managers and politicians. Maybe the scientists involved will help with this messy task?

Salmon in coastal Oregon

Parked in Switzerland, watching some interesting trout spawn in nearby streams is nice (more later), but here's some news that warms my heart.

Coho salmon--my fish-- are doing better in coastal Oregon where I grew up. It's been a long time coming, but things are looking better.

For you data fans, here's a information-dense status review that says basically the same thing as the news piece linked above. Things are looking better.

Interestingly, the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch program rated Oregon coho as fish to avoid in their seafood buyer's advice. I think they're wrong for most Oregon fish, and it seems that they know better but can't fit the details on a simple seafood wallet card.


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