By John Upton
(cross-posted from Grist post at http://grist.org/news/gulf-fisherman-there-is-no-life-out-there/)
If it’s true that oysters are aphrodisiacs, then BP has killed the mood.
Louisiana’s oyster season opened last week, but thanks to the mess that still lingers after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster, there aren’t many oysters around.
“We can’t find any production out there yet,” Brad Robin, a commercial fisherman and Louisiana Oyster Task Force member, told Al Jazeera. “There is no life out there.” Many of Louisiana’s oyster harvest areas are “dead or mostly dead,” he says.
In Mississippi, fishing boats that used to catch 30 sacks of oysters a day are returning to docks in the evenings with fewer than half a dozen sacks aboard.
It’s not just oysters. The entire fishing industry is being hit, with catches down and shrimp and shellfish being discovered with disgusting deformities. One seafood business owner told Al Jazeera that his revenue was down 85 percent compared with the period before the spill. From the article:
“I’ve seen a lot of change since the spill,” [Hernando Beach Seafood co-owner Kathy] Birren told Al Jazeera. “Our stone crab harvest has dropped off and not come back; the numbers are way lower. Typically you’ll see some good crabbing somewhere along the west coast of Florida, but this last year we’ve had problems everywhere.”
Birren said the problems are not just with the crabs. “We’ve also had our grouper fishing down since the spill,” she added. “We’ve seen fish with tar balls in their stomachs from as far down as the Florida Keys. We had a grouper with tar balls in its stomach last month. Overall, everything is down.”
According to Birren, many fishermen in her area are giving up. “People are dropping out of the fishing business, and selling out cheap because they have to. I’m in west-central Florida, but fishermen all the way down to Key West are struggling to make it. I look at my son’s future, as he’s just getting into the business, and we’re worried.”
Ecosystem recovery is a slow process. Ed Cake, an oceanographer and marine biologist, points out that oysters still have not returned to some of the areas affected by a 1979 oil well blowout in the Gulf. He thinks recovery from the BP disaster will take decades.
KINGSTON, Jamaica (AP) â€” Conservationists in St. Maarten are warning islanders not to eat lionfish after tests found a naturally occurring toxin in the flesh of the candy-striped invasive species, officials said Thursday.
The findings have dealt a blow to the tiny Dutch territory's efforts to contain the spread of the venomous predator, a native of the Indian and Pacific oceans that has colonized large swaths of the region after a few apparently escaped a Florida fish tank in 1992.
via St Maarten finds local lionfish tainted with toxin - Yahoo! News. through WordPress' PressThis. Follow link above to continue article ...
FILE- In this July 2006 file image released
by NOAA Undersea Research Center, a lionfishÂ â€¦
Fish You Shouldn't Eat | Yahoo! Health.
By David Zinczenko with Matt Goulding
Nov 14, 2011
copied via WordPress "PressThis". If youâ€™re over the age of 12, youâ€™ve probably had more than a few dearly held beliefs ruined by reality. Like when you discovered it was Mom and Dad, not Santa, who were orchestrating the magic of Christmas. Or when you spent hours watching â€œKimâ€™s Fairytale Weddingâ€ over and over again, only to learn that keeping up with this Kardashian was a waste of time. As they say, reality bites. Well, folks, I hate to do this to you, but . . . Not all fish are good for you. Last year, the USDA increased its seafood recommendation to 8 ounces per week, and that has led many to believe that all fish are equally smart choices. But some are so high in contaminants like mercury that their health benefits are outweighed by their health risks. Others are flown in from halfway around the world, but given labels that make you think they were caught fresh earlier that morning. And still others are raised in filthy, overcrowed pools and loaded up with chemicals to keep them alive. Â So let me shed light on some very rough waters. Put these fish at the top of your don't-eat list and you'll avoid most of the troubles of the world's fishing industry.#1: ATLANTIC BLUEFIN TUNAWhy It's Bad: A recent analysis by The New York Times found that Atlantic bluefin tuna has the highest levels of mercury of any type of tuna. To top it off, bluefin tuna are severely overharvested, to the point of reaching near-extinction levels, and are considered "critically endangered" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Rather than trying to navigate the ever-changing recommendations for which tuna is best, consider giving it up altogether. But if you can't . . .
Eat This Instead: Opt for American or Canadian (but not imported!) albacore tuna, which is caught while it's young and doesn't contain as high levels of mercury.
YOUR NEW SHOPPING LIST! There are more than 45,000 options in the average supermarket. Some will wreck your waistline; some will shrink it. The easiest way to choose: Go ahead and put anything from our newly updated list of the 125 Best Supermarket Foods in your shopping cartâ€”and watch the pounds melt away! (And check out Cook This, Not That! Easy & Awesome 350-Calorie Meals to save time and money!)