Turkey's fishermen set sail as seasonal ban ends
“The [fishing] season is about to start, as [fishermen’s] preparations are about to end. We hope for the fish [in the seas] to be fruitful. This season we expect a lot of bonitos. Last season, there was a lack in the number of all types of fish. This season, the number of bonitos seems to be fruitful,” Istanbul Region Aquaculture Cooperatives Association (İSTBİRLİK) head Erdoğan Kartal told state-run Anadolu Agency on Aug. 31.
“Our fishermen are already excited. We expect them to have a good fishing season. We wish them good luck, and hopefully they will have prosperous days,” Kartal said.
The İSTBİRLİK head said 322,000 tons of fish were caught in Turkish waters last year, citing data from the Agriculture and Forestry Ministry, but this year they were expecting this number to pass 500,000 tons.
“If the number of anchovies reaches the figure of a normal season, the number of fish caught, including bonitos, will pass 500,000 [this season],” Kartal said.
This situation would also reflect on the fish prices, which will also make customers equally happy, according to Kartal.
He urged fisherman to abide by the hunting criteria, saying: “We have many different types of fish in our seas. We need to abide by the minimum-size limit. Why should we? Because, we need to give at least once a chance to the fish to spawn. We need to do whatever the law says so that this business is sustainable.”
One of the fishermen told the agency that he was quite busy restoring and fixing the damaged parts of his fishing boat to make it ready for the new season.
“We have put our boat under maintenance, because it had quite a lot of damages. The season is about to start; we have fully insulated the boat. Along with that, we’ll apply putty and sandpaper, repaint it in a way to make it ready for the season,” Mehmet Can, the fisherman, reportedly said.