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potomacdrifter

Virginia Menhaden Need Your Help

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In the next 30 days, Virginia will make a decision that will dramatically impact the Chesapeake Bay and fish, like striped bass, that thrive in it. Virginia public officials will decide whether to cap the industrial harvest of menhaden. The overall number of menhaden is at historic lows, and scientific studies show that striped bass, which rely on it as a major food source, are suffering from malnutrition, poor body condition and disease.

 

Your action is needed now. Please contact Virginia's new governor, Tim Kaine, and tell him that menhaden matter and to support the cap.

 

You can send an electronic letter to the Governor by clicking on this link:

http://trcp.ga0.org/campaign/support...tripers_online

 

Thanks for helping out.

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I sent this...with a long explanation of the benefits since NJ banned the factory ships. Not only do you need a cap, but I recommend a push to remove them from state waters altogether.

 

Send a response today for the bunker! icon14.gif

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Ditto - in my letter I explained how the bunker in the Chesapeake are not just important to VA, but are critical up and down the east coast, including every river and bay.

 

Please, everyone, it takes about 30 seconds - please follow the link above and send your letter to the VA governor! Bunker are important, they matter in every aspect of the oceans and bays - they need to be protected.

 

The bill being considered is only a cap, it's not a reduction in harvest - it will not cause the loss of a single job, it will only put an important cap on the amount of menhaden that can be taken from the Chesapeake.

 

TimS

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I guess I don't understand? How does writing VA's governor help? Isn't the bill (and the competing bill) in front of the VA Assembly? Don't they, not the gov, have the final say? confused.gif

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I guess I don't understand? How does writing VA's governor help? Isn't the bill (and the competing bill) in front of the VA Assembly? Don't they, not the gov, have the final say? confused.gif

 

The General Assembly members certainly need to hear from you, too. But, it is also important to make sure the Governor stands firm on this issue. I would contact both. My earlier posting had a link to a site where you can electroncially contact the governor (here it is again: http://trcp.ga0.org/campaign/support...tripers_online The General Assembly does not. However, you can go to the site to find out who your delegate and senator are and use the toll-free number to call them. Here's the link:

http://legis.state.va.us/cit_guide/c...acting_my.html

Thanks for taking the time to do this.

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VA doesn't have a lot of choice on this matter. If they don't pass the bill then they will be out of compliance with ASMFC and the Secretary of Commerce will shut down all menhaden fishing until they comply....right?

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VA doesn't have a lot of choice on this matter. If they don't pass the bill then they will be out of compliance with ASMFC and the Secretary of Commerce will shut down all menhaden fishing until they comply...right?

 

Is that the case? icon25.gif

 

TimS

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I'm in. icon14.gif

 

<Governor@governor.virginia.gov>

01/20/2006 02:55 PM\t

To <jyd@qad.com>

Subject

Re: Your Message

\t

Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with me. I

appreciate your interest in issues that impact the Commonwealth of

Virginia.

 

Sincerely,

 

Tim Kaine

Governor of Virginia

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1) I've already sent a email to Governor Kaine regarding this topic and emaphasizing the effect that a decline in game fishing oppurtunity could have on fishing related tourism. 2) But I do have a question. Back in the late '90s, Forestry Departments and Agricultural agents in the Chesepeake Bay watershed area (including parts of VA, PA, WV, NY, MD, and Del) started a concerted effort to establish riparian buffers along both public and private waterways that drained into the bay. The idea was to control infiltration of sediment, trap nutrients and provide waterway shading (to directly reduce water temperatures). The idea was to reduce the nutrient level in the bay and resultant algal blooms and accelerated eutrophication. All of which was causing problems in the bay. So my question is, is water quality and algal blooms still a major problem? Is this in part a cause of the reduction in Menhaden or is the Menhaden decline just a function of overharvesting? A simple question that probably cannot be answered with a simple answer.

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Farflung,

 

Probably a mix of lots of things; water currents, water quality, predators, and fishing. But bottom line is that no one really knows why recruitment to the Bay has been off and which factors are most important. The water quality is down in the Bay. There are some suggestions that recruitment in the north of the Bay has been strong (Like in New England). I think this year is the next assessment for menhaden. So we'll see....

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Farflung

 

Also, the idea of the cap is to allow both the reductive and the bait menhaden fisheries to continue operating for the next five years while they study the myriad impacts of menhaden on the bay. It's really a win-win situation for the Bay and those folks who use it.

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So, in the opinion of the folks here, the proposed cap is low enough to allow the population to recover? I'm often suspisous that the level set is based more on historic landing, which, if it was unsubstainable, could continue to depress the population.

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