Here in North Carolina, we are blessed with an abundance of coastal and inland waterways in which we as North Carolinians have enjoyed playing, fishing, and hunting for many generations. However, due to the single minded greed and sense of entitlement of a small group of commercial fishermen, our inshore waters have become nothing but a killing zone for juvenile finfish. Each year, inshore shrimp trawlers kill approximately 27,635,850 pounds of juvenile fish including spot, Atlantic croaker, and weakfish (also called grey trout). These trawlers are designed to catch shrimp with great efficiency, and they have done so for decades. The problem comes in the fact that they also catch anything else that happens to be swimming along with the shrimp, which is referred to as bycatch. Currently, this bycatch adds up to 4.5 pounds for every pound of shrimp that is caught. These juvenile fish are unable to survive the process of being hauled onto a trawler, laying there while the shrimp are sorted out and then being summarily shoveled overboard as trash. These dead fish can often be seen floating along in our inshore waters in the wake of the shrimp trawlers. Birds eat what they can, and some fish and crabs feed off of the fish that sink, but they can only eat so much, and the thousands of pounds of fish that are left over simply begin to rot.
For the sake of our marine resources, and in order to reestablish some balance to our marine ecosystem, it’s time to remove the large shrimp trawlers from North Carolina’s inshore waters.
To learn more about the dangers of inshore shrimp trawling here in NC, please read the following whitepaper that was written by the CCA NC Fisheries Committee
The following video from NCWF will help explain why Shrimp Trawling in our inshore waters is such a big problem:
If that video didn’t make you want to call the NC General Assembly and ask them to ban inshore shrimp trawling, please watch the video below which was filmed on the deck of a shrimp trawler in the Pamlico Sound: