News Feature

Originally published in The Weekly Packet, December 5, 2013
Moratorium on Maine shrimp fishery
No shrimp season this winter; stock collapsed

Shrimp season cancelled this year

No shrimp will be sold this year, as the fishery has been closed in the hopes of rebuilding stock. Pictured here is a 2010 shrimp buy organized by Penobscot East Resource Center in Stonington. .”

Penobscot Bay Press file photo

by Jessica Brophy

The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission met Tuesday, December 3, in Portland. At that meeting, the commission voted to eliminate the Maine shrimp season in 2014.

The decision to not allow a shrimp season this winter was based on the commission’s 2013 Northern Shrimp Assessment, which concluded the stock status indicates “the stock is overfished and that overfishing occurred in 2012 and 2013,” despite a 72 percent reduction in quota and other conservation measures in 2013.

The ASMFC’s report indicates that “this stock has collapsed…Three successive years of recruitment failure and continuing warm temperatures indicate poor prospects for the near future, both in terms of the fishery and for stock recovery.”

The report recommended a moratorium on shrimp fishing in 2014 to “maximize spawning potential of the population.”