PORTLAND, Maine — Fishery managers are considering new regulatory alternatives for bluefin tuna that Gloucester and other New England fishermen fear could result in smaller quotas for them.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has been holding hearings on different options for new regulations aimed at protecting and rebuilding tuna populations. The new regulations are targeted to go into effect in 2014.
Possible measures being looked at focus on bluefin that are inadvertently caught and discarded by boats fishing for swordfish, yellowfin tuna and other fish from the Gulf of Mexico to Canada.
The Atlantic Bluefin Tuna Association says New England bluefin fishermen who use fishing rods or harpoons are worried their quotas could be cut to account for the dead discards.
A public hearing was held in conjunction with the New England Fishery Management Council meeting Monday night in Portland, with regulators discussing matters today as both meetings continue.
Last night's hearing was the only one held in New England.
Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.