Turkey's fishermen head for sea as seasonal fishing ban ends
Fishermen around Turkey took to the seas early yesterday after 4.5 months of a seasonal fishing ban. Company photoFishermen around Turkey took to the seas early yesterday following the Sept. 1 ending of a seasonal fishing ban.
Between April 15 and Sept. 1, a fishing ban on large boats was in effect in Turkey and large industrial fishing vessels and trawlers were legally prohibited from traversing the country’s seas.
“We caught more than we hoped. This year seems to be more fruitful than it did last year,” said a fisherman during a ceremony that was organized by the Istanbul Fisheries and Animal Products Exporters Association very early yesterday.
Fishermen mostly caught blue mackerel, mackerel and bonito during their first day of the season.
While Turkey exported around $1.4 billion of fish and fish products in 2011, this number increased to $1.66 billion in 2012. “We are aiming at reaching 1.85 billion this year,” said the association’s head, Ahmet Tuncay Sagun.
Environmentalists, meanwhile, have called for the fishing ban to be extended until Oct. 1, saying the period from April to October is the most crucial time for fish to lay their eggs.