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All  Maine Center for Coastal Fisheries publications are PDF files and can be viewed or downloaded and read using Adobe’s free PDF reader.


Robin Alden

Magnuson Stevens needs a 40-year tune up Op-Ed

Robin Alden, May 2013

An excerpt: “Here in Downeast Maine, we have learned that when fishermen and regulators work together, they design management strategies that fishermen support and abide by. The Maine lobster fishery is well-known example. More recently, the state and fishermen, assisted by Penobscot East Resource Center, have been working to restore and manage nearshore sea scallops. It has produced better results than any past efforts, and has demonstrated the potential for new kinds of collaboration in fisheries management.”

TEDxDirigo Living by Fish Doing it Right in Downeast Maine

Robin Alden, May 16, 2012

An excerpt: “And we’re there for the long haul, a daunting responsibility. Hope — which is what fishermen tell us we are giving them — is extraordinarily fragile, especially for people who are used to command and control, not being part of the ups and downs of a long, collective process. And so, I have hope that, in the next 10-20 years, it is possible to build a new and lasting fishing economy in eastern Maine. This is a big job that will require collective action by many people and groups, and state and federal government. But imagine: Restored rivers and a restored and diverse marine system. Boats that fish and tend the productivity of a local area, based on dynamic science informed by an active, two-way exchange with fishermen. An adaptable, fair market that turns diverse species into food.”

Ted Ames

Remembering Cod

Ted Ames, 2011, A contribution to Pew Environment Group

An excerpt: “Former cod fisherman and historian Ted Ames of Stonington, Maine, says he heard about an old salt who “hauled in 25 tons in 20 minutes after steaming to a favorite fishing spot. . . . He filled the net so full that it could not be brought on board without sinking the vessel. So he pulled the net behind him into port and then waited for the tide to go out so he could get the fish.”

Putting Fishermen's Knowledge to Work: The Promise and Pitfalls

Ted Ames, 2005

An excerpt: “Indigenous fishermen’s knowledge often gets dismissed for being subjective, anecdotal, and of little value to today’s fisheries and centralized management strategies. Yet, fishermen have spent much of their lives accumulating intimate, fine scale ecological information that is not otherwise available. Pitfalls encountered during efforts to access fishermen-based information during the mapping of historical Gulf of Maine spawning grounds of cod and haddock are reviewed and the strategies developed to overcome them are included. Current and future roles for fishermen’s knowledge in managing coastal fisheries are examined. Various ways to integrate the local place-based information of fishermen into current management strategies and potential for introducing a new local management paradigm are explored.”

The Stock Structure of Atlantic Cod in the Gulf of Maine

Ted Ames, 2004

This publication uses anecdotes from veteran Maine fishermen to show where cod have historically spawned. He concludes that system-wide assessments of cod stocks are inaccurate. Looking at the character and distribution of cod in the abundant 1920’s, Ted shows that in fact depletion may have been well advanced by the 1980s. He proposes that management of sub-populations is the key to rebuilding a sustainable fishery.

The work was widely recognized, and in 2005, the MacArthur Foundation awarded him with a prestigious fellowship. Ted also received the 2007 Geddes W. Simpson Distinguished Lecturer award at the University of Maine.

“I propose a modification, like the Maine lobster zone plan, that basically creates area management for each of the four subpopulations of codfish. Because my later work is showing that cod, haddock, cusk, wolfish, white hake, winter flounder, grey sole, have their life cycle within the same area as these cod populations, I’m arguing that this is the logical, rational management unit for those species.”

Carla Guenther