SSA 2017 has ended
SSA could not be possible without the generous support of Drs. Herbert A. and Betty Lou Lubs and the Science, Society, and the Arts Research Conference Endowment. We are deeply grateful!
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Friday, March 17 • 3:00pm - 4:15pm
Easel 33: ENVS Capstone Menhaden Management: Politics and Science of the Most Important Fish in the Sea

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Atlantic Menhaden are a small, oily fish that are integral to the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem. They are harvested and reduced for their Omega-3 oils, which are used in health supplements and animal feeds. The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) sets harvest caps for menhaden, but the Virginia General Assembly manages the fishery directly, even though the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC) manages every other fishery in Virginia. The reason the General Assembly still manages menhaden is because 85 percent of the Atlantic Menhaden catch in the Mid-Atlantic is harvested by a single, politically powerful corporation, Omega Protein. If the fishery were governed by the VMRC, regulation decisions would be based on science, not politics. The question becomes: what steps must be taken in order for the VMRC to gain control of the species’ regulation and make more holistic, effective, and science-based policies for this important fishery?

Friday March 17, 2017 3:00pm - 4:15pm
Leyburn Library