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Fishing Notes NE Feb 07

U.S. makes push for bluefin tuna recovery

Representatives from the United States fought for tougher conservation measures to end overfishing of eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean bluefin tuna during a meeting of the international commission that manages tuna and tuna-like species.

The 2006 stock assessment of these fish included the opinion that the stock is being over-harvested and will collapse if strong conservation measures were not adopted and implemented. The meeting of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas, or ICCAT, was held in Dubrovnik, Croatia, last fall.

“The United States wants to manage commercial tuna fishing in an environmentally sound way,” said Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez. “We want to limit harvests to sustainable levels to ensure the future of tuna stocks and the fishermen who depend on them. We will continue to work with the world’s fishing community towards these goals.”

The United States supported reducing annual eastern bluefin tuna catches to 16,500 tons and expanding the closed season in the Mediterranean to the peak spawning month of June for all bluefin tuna fleets, which catch bluefin using different types of fishing gear.

IGFA Hall of Fame enshrines five

Five honorees were inducted into the International Game Fish Association Fishing Hall of Fame at the eighth annual celebration in October.

• John W. “Jack” Anderson II fished for species all over the world. An IGFA Trustee since 1976, he served on the Advisory Committee that was instrumental in creating the IGFA Fishing Hall of Fame & Museum. Anderson, who resides in Palm Beach, Fla., says he was surprised to be inducted: “It seems wrong to get an award for doing something that gave me so much fun.”

• Charles Alma Baker, a businessman who died in 1941, was a pioneer big-game angler in New Zealand who persuaded Zane Grey to visit the country in 1926. The subsequently published account of this trip, “Tales of the Angler’s Eldorado New Zealand,” described the fishing opportunities available in the country that Baker continued to promote through the early part of the 20th century.

• Bill Dance became one of the first full-time bass pros and was credited with catching the first bass in Ray Scott’s 1967 All-American Bass Tournament (the forerunner to today’s Bassmaster Tournament Trail). He went on to win eight BASS tournaments between 1968 and 1970, and is the recipient of three BASS “Angler of the Year” titles. His television show, “Bill Dance Outdoors,” has been airing for 38 years.

• Hidenori Onishi was one of the founders of the Japan Game Fish Association in 1979 and was JGFA Chairman until his death in 1998. Hank Onishi was a vocal proponent of billfish conservation helping to inaugurate the JGFA’s successful tag-and-release program in 1985.

• Milton C. Shedd was a leading oceanographer, a lifelong conservationist, and one of the first anglers to participate in tagging studies. Shedd also pioneered live-bait casting for marlin, co-founded Sea World, helped create the UCLA Marine Science Center, and in the early 1970s started the white sea bass hatchery program. In 1973 Shedd purchased AFTCO Manufacturing Company, today a leading manufacturer of tackle and apparel. He died in 2002 from cancer.

Holiday Isle to host annual tournament

The Holiday Isle Sailfish Tournament will cast off for the 22nd year, Jan. 12, with a 6 p.m. pre-registration at the Quarterdeck at Holiday Isle Resort, Mile Marker 84 oceanside in Islamorada, Florida Keys. Fishing begins Jan. 13, with Lines In at 8:30 a.m. Lines Out is to be called at 4 p.m.

For information contact Holiday Isle at (305) 664-2321.