Falmouth Selectmen Latest To Support Herring Buffer Zone

FALMOUTH – Falmouth Selectmen voted last month to support Amendment 8 to Atlantic Herring Fishery Management Plan.

If it passes, The New England Fishery Management Council will implement a year-round, no-fishing buffer zone prohibiting mid-water trawling around the Cape.

Mid-water trawlers currently come within 3 miles of the coastline.

Town manager Julian Suso said there is a particular type of boat that needs more regulation:

“There’s a concern about a fishing vessels known as mid-water trawlers and there harmful impact on river herring.Next month, the council will consider implementing a buffer zone around Cape Cod,” he said

Right now, when the trawlers are fishing for ocean herring, they also scoop up millions of pounds of river herring.

Suso says the goal is to replenish the stock. “By forcing the trawlers off shore, river herring, which are a critical part of the food chain, will thrive closer to shore.”

In Maine, Connecticut and New York, they must stay 12 miles off shore.

Other Cape municipalities, including Brewster, Eastham, Provincetown, Harwich and Orleans, are supporting the amendment.

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