MCCF Monthly
June 2021
Summer is underway and fishermen are preparing for what will be
a busy season. As restaurants and businesses make their anticipated return, Maine seafood will be in demand. Summer visitors are eager to see what
the coast has to offer - from witnessing bustling working waterfronts and enjoying a plethora of outdoor activities, to experiencing a taste of
fresh lobster rolls, oysters, clams, and more.

In this month's e-letter, we're excited to announce the re-opening of
Discovery Wharf. We also provide some insight into the NOAA-issued biological opinion on the North Atlantic Right Whale, and look at sea
surface temperature trends. Mark your calendars for our first in-person
event of the year, which you can read more about below!
NMFS Releases Biological Opinion
on Lobster Fishery: Now What?
Last month, NOAA Fisheries released the updated biological opinion and conservation framework that will inform a new set of regulations for the lobster fishery intended to reduce the risk to the endangered North Atlantic Right Whales. These are long and complex reports, and we at MCCF will be reviewing them carefully to anticipate the timing and effect of the regulations that are likely to come out later this summer.

A quick scan suggests that there will be new requirements for trawl configurations based on fishing location to reduce the number of vertical lines. Still, NOAA indicates that the industry will be given time to make those changes during slower fishing months. Read more on our blog.
Discovery Wharf to
Welcome Back Visitors
We are excited to announce the re-opening of our marine education center, Discovery Wharf. The interpretive center will open its doors beginning Tuesday, June 22 with a limited schedule and new reservation system.

Discovery Wharf has welcomed thousands of visitors from across the country and world, but it was closed to the public last summer due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The use of a booking system will allow staff to follow CDC, state, and local guidelines as well as proper cleaning procedures in-between visitors to ensure a safe experience for everyone.

MCCF’s Executive Director, Paul Anderson shares, “We are looking forward to meeting visitors at our location on Stonington Harbor so we can continue to help people understand fishing and the seafood economy of eastern Maine.”

Read the full announcement on our website and book your visit today!
Tracking Gulf of Maine
Sea Surface Temperature
Readers of MCCF's weekly column "The View from Atlantic Avenue" featured in the Island Ad-Vantages, will note that we're including water temperature data from the oceanographic buoy, located off the coast near Stonington. This data comes from the Northeast Regional Coastal Ocean Observing System (NERACOOS) and this particular buoy (I-01) was one of the original locations covered by the Gulf of Maine Ocean Observing System several years ago. NERACOOS recently re-launched their Mariner’s Dashboard, which can be accessed on their website and a wide range of oceanographic and meteorological information at dozens of locations throughout the northeast region of North America can be viewed. We pay attention to the water temperature as it cyclically warms and cools each year. On June 8 this year, the sea surface temperature at buoy I-01 was 52.5°F. Fishermen have observed that nearby waters in the Gulf of Maine have been warming faster this spring than previous years. Sure enough, according to records, on June 8, 2020 the sea surface temperature was 47°F. That’s a 5-degree difference! It’s interesting that the lobster shedding has started early, the alewife run was about three weeks early, and we’ve heard reports of pogies (menhaden) in midcoast and downeast Maine.
Save the Date: Benefit Sale
We're excited to announce that we will be having a benefit sale with raffle drawings on Saturday, July 24th from 9:00am to 3:00pm. If you have items that you’d like to donate, please drop them off at our 13 Atlantic Avenue office in Stonington, any time Monday through Friday between the hours of 8:00am to 4:00pm. This is a fundraising event, so we kindly ask that only items of good quality and in working order be donated. We are not interested in any books or clothing.

To arrange for your large items to be picked up, or to get your questions answered, please contact Bobbi Billings, Administrative Director, at 207.348.2264 or email [email protected].
June Online Lunch & Learn
Join us on Friday, June 25 at 12:30pm for "Inheriting Change: A Panel Featuring Youth Perspectives on Climate Change and Maine Fisheries." This one-hour webinar will feature perspectives from four members of a generation that will inherit the consequences of climate change on our local fishing communities. Hallie is a COA student and member of “Maine Youth for Climate Justice,” who thinks “we need to have a just transition to a livable future for everyone, including fishermen.” Elijah is a 19-year old fisherman from Eastport who is already diversifying his work to integrate kelp and mussel aquaculture with his lobster fishing and boat building. Rylee, who just graduated from Deer Isle-Stonington High School as Salutatorian, and Sophie, from George Stevens Academy, have seen the stresses of the reaction to climate change on fishermen and their families. This discussion will be moderated by Parker Gassett, Marine Extension Associate with Maine Sea Grant. Participants will be invited to join the discussion during. Register today!
Be inspired. Fish forever.
Every day, Maine fishermen are working in unpredictable elements to bring fresh seafood to the tables of many. Maine Center for Coastal Fisheries continues efforts to secure a sustainable future for fisheries and fishing communities in Eastern Maine and beyond. We are taking collective actions that include the knowledge of fishermen, the findings of scientists and partnerships with regulatory authorities, at all levels, to make sure we can
keep fishing alive for today and for tomorrow’s fishery stewards.

We know that these are unprecedented times. If you are able to give,
please consider making a tax-deductible donation today.

Together we can fish forever.