PEIFA getting logbooks

Eric McCarthyPublished on April 01, 2014

To satisfy DFO’s data collection demands
TIGNISH -- The P.E.I. Fishermen’s Association has ordered logbooks to supply to lobster fishermen for the 2014 season, executive director Ian MacPherson informed an information meeting of the Western Gulf Fishermen’s Association on Monday.

MacPherson said it looks like the Department of Fisheries and Oceans will require fishermen to use the logbooks this year despite strong opposition from numerous fishing organizations. “It’s going to be a condition of your license,“ MacPherson advised. Organizations had been insisting DFO delay data collection until it has the means to gather the information electronically. The books will cost fishermen six or seven dollars and should last fishermen two to three years, he indicated.

Its not the cost of the books that has been the issue, though; fishermen groups have speculated DFO does not have the means to enter the data from all the paper returns. DFO, however, has indicated it will be handling the data and that gathering it will be part of the process for obtaining Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification. “Anything in your catch has to be recorded,” MacPherson advised the close to 70 fishermen in attendance.