Suit Seeks Protection For River Fish

An environmental group says populations of river herring and shad are being decimated by commercial fishing along the Eastern seaboard.

Earthjustice demands in a lawsuit filed on Monday in U.S. District Court in Washington that the National Marine Fisheries Service and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Service develop a plan to protect those species.

The plaintiffs include the Martha's Vineyard/Duke's County Commercial Fishermen's Association in Massachusetts.

Earthjustice says fishermen trawling for mackerel and sea herring are also scooping up millions of river herring and shad, resulting in as much as a 90 percent decline in the species since 1985.

A spokeswoman for the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission says it has already asked regional fisheries councils to address the issue.

The National Marine Fisheries Service said it does not comment on pending litigation.

This program aired on September 20, 2010. The audio for this program is not available.


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