March 1-3 in Rockport

All things fishing at 43rd annual Maine Fishermen’s Forum

Posted:  Wednesday, February 28, 2018 - 5:00pm

ROCKPORT — Maine fishermen are gathering this week and weekend at the Samoset Resort in Rockport for their 43rd annual Fishermen’s Forum. The annual congregation draws hundreds of  fishermen, gear suppliers, scientists, government and other stakeholders to collaborate on all things fishing: markets, resource status, regulations, the latest in technology, the environment and more.  

Additionally, politicians tend to make appearances at the forum, and the trade show attracts many participants.

Seminars include:

Thursday, March 1

Shellfish Day: Economics & Business Innovation

The Evolution of a Shellfish Farm
Pathways Program
Clam Recruitment Studies
Mussel Drone Survey in the Jordan River
Emerging Harmful Algae Blooms in the Gulf of Maine
Retrospective, Looking at the Independent Evaluations of Public Health

from 2009-2012
300 Acres and Counting: How the Medomak Task Force is Fixing

Pollution and Opening Closed Flats
Using Drifter Surveys to Understand Tides and Pollution
Linking Science and Management to fix Pollution and to Open Closed Flats Timing and Spatial Variability of Soft-Shell Clams and Green Crab Recruitment

in the Harraseeket River, Freeport
The Myth of “Dead Mud:” using Shellfish Recruitment Boxes Where’d the Clams Go? A Mya Arenaria Recruitment Field Study of

Northern Bay 2017
Shellfish Needs Assessment Listening Session
Voices from the Maine Fishermen’s Forum (parking lot)
ASHI First Aid and CPR Training (pre-registration required)
eMOLT Collaboration with Fishermen and Scientists Research Society Reel in Some Cash

Friday, March 2, 2018

Herring Amendment 8 Information Update

Maine Lobstermen’s Assn. 64th Annual Meeting
Voices from the Maine Fishermen’s Forum
(parking lot)
Maine Coast Community Sector Annual Meeting
Eastern Maine Skippers Program: How Can Individuals & Communities Manage and Restore Local Fisheries?
Lobsters to Dollars: The Economic Impact of Maine’s Lobster Supply Chain Northeast Coastal Communities Sector Meeting
Electronic Monitoring on the Water
Can Right Whales and Fishing Rope Co-Exist?
Open Forum with NOAA Fisheries Leadership
Northern Gulf of Maine Federal Scallop Fishery

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Water Survival Training: Water Safety and Emergency Egress Training (Pool) Maine Elver Fishermen’s Association Annual Meeting

Maine Lobster Boat Racing Assn. 2018 Pre-Season Meeting
Embracing Ecosystem Change: Can Jonah Crab, Black Sea Bass, and Fishing Communities Get Along?

Lifejackets – Alive and Fishing!
Voices from the Maine Fishermen’s Forum
(parking lot)
Alewife Harvesters of Maine Annual Meeting
The Food Guys “La Cucina Famiglia” - My Family's Kitchen - #CookYourHeritage

Maine Department of Marine Resources Science Update
Maine’s Seafood Economy: Investments in the Future
Scallop Aquaculture
State of the Lobster Fishery: Management and Policy
Ecosystem Based Fisheries Management: Recent and Emerging Efforts Maine Lobster Marketing Annual Report

Evaluating Spatio-Temporal Dynamics of Bycatch in the Lobster Fishery and Habitat for Cusk and Cod
Developing a Viable Green Crab Fishery in New England: Current Progress and Future Challenges 


VISION of the Maine Fishermen’s Forum
The Association envision a world where:

  • There is a healthy fishing industry engaged in stewardship and self-regulation, utilizing resources that are maintained at sustainable levels with continuous opportunity for independent fishermen to have responsible access to the commercial waterfront, the resources, and fishing grounds;
  • Management decisions are made at as local a level as appropriate and are based upon a broad systems approach;
  • The public and the industry are continuously informed in a constructive manner about the resources, the industry and their issues.

GOALS of the Maine Fishermen’s Forum

  • An educated public and industry
  • Interaction and sharing among industry, science, and managers
  • An industry, the segments of which actively listen to one another and understand one another and each other’s particular issues. (This would include managers and the environmental community.)
  • Enhanced networks and a sense of community.

This year, the Fishermen's Association has the privilege of collaborating on three sessions at the Maine Fishermen's Forum. All of the sessions provide fishermen and partners with the opportunity to listen to their peers and engage in discussions that will better support Maine's resilient fishing communities. Check out what we have to offer and see what great other sessions you can attend HERE.

Reel in Some Cash
Thursday, 1 p.m., Rockport Room
An afternoon focused on the opportunities to bring in more cash from your fishing business. With an opening discussion from chef and author Barton Seaver focused on opportunities that he sees for those fishing in the Gulf of Maine. We then transition into three-panel discussions.

The first panel will focus on "What it takes to grab these opportunities" with a discussion on permits, permitting, regulations, and reporting for new and emerging fisheries in the Gulf of Maine. The second panel will focus on "Getting paid for your story" and the opportunities that exist in marketing, direct to consumer marketing and branding.

Electronic Monitoring on the Water
Friday, 1 p.m.,  Rockland Room
This seminar will highlight several fishermen-driven pilot programs, and groundfish captains using cameras to monitor discards will share their perspectives on how electronic monitoring works on the water.

The seminar will include a presentation of electronic monitoring footage from a variety of gear types and boat setups, and electronic monitoring captains will discuss fishing operations and catch handling with electronic monitoring. Following the presentation of electronic monitoring footage and boat setups, the seminar will open to a roundtable discussion for participants to share ideas and questions about electronic monitoring and its long-term usefulness as a monitoring tool.

Maine Coast Community Sector's Annual Meeting
Friday, 10:30 a.m. Fitness Center
The Maine Coast Community Sector will hold its annual sector meeting. During its annual meeting, MCCS will be discussing the past groundfish fishing year and what we anticipate for the next year ahead.

We will also be reviewing advancements in electronic monitoring, electronic jigging machines, and any policy updates we have for the fishing year.