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« Don't Stall Bay Cleanup Over Dam Problem | Main | Bay Rebounds from Sandy »

11/07/2012

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A few weeks back there was an article on menhaden. after doing some research, the state of Va. is one of the biggest offenders of the relaxed fishing guidelines for this particular species. The State legislature oversees this fishery, and is easily corrupted by one company (Omega Protein) Who reduction harvests over 90% of this species total landings. The stock on this fishery is down 88% from 1984. Menhaden are filter feeders that clean 10 times more water than oysters. They clean the upper regions and the oysters and other benthic species clean up the bottom. When you consider the time line side by side with the health of the bay, light goes off. Menhaden are the prey species for striped bass, tuna, bluefish, egrets, pelicans, dolphins, sharks, and others. They are considered to be the most important fish in the sea. The are the most harvested fish in the New World. Many of their products can easily be replaced by soy bean oil or other substitutes.The owner of this company owns the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Manchester United Soccer team, the Chesapeake's expense as well as the many lost jobs. There needs to be a scientific agency involved with the management of this species, not a bunch of political know nothings.

Well said, Jeff! The Chesapeake Bay Foundation is working hard for restrictions on industrial menhaden harvests, because the fish are so important as a food source for other species and as a filter feeder in the estuary.

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