"Fishers Struggle as Fish Head for the Poles"

"In the northeastern United States, fishing regulations are not keeping up with species on the move."

"As climate change raises the ocean’s temperature, some fish species are moving poleward to cooler waters. In the United States, as elsewhere, commercial fishers are trying to adapt. But as a new study of trawler communities along the US east coast documents, fishers’ efforts to adjust are being constrained by a regulatory environment that isn’t adapting with them.

The research, led by Eva Papaioannou, a marine ecologist with the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel in Germany, looked at trawl fishing communities in 10 ports from North Carolina to Maine, where rising water temperatures have been especially pronounced.

Papaioannou and her colleagues dug into government records and vessel trip reports, examining decades of data about vessel activity patterns, distributions of fish stocks, and fish landings. They compared two periods, 1996 to 2000 and 2011 to 2015, and confirmed that the fish these communities are primarily targeting, fluke and hake, had shifted northward by up to 200 kilometers."

Steve Murray reports for Hakai magazine August 16, 2021.

Source: Hakai, 08/17/2021