May 28, 2020
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Monkfish research goes high-tech

PORTLAND, Maine — A once obscure fish that looks like a sea monster is getting a lot more attention from Maine scientists.

Monkfish used to be largely ignored by fishermen and consumers, but it is growing in popularity in high-end restaurants in the United States and Asia. The white tail flesh is similar in texture to lobster meat, and monkfish livers are a popular dish in Asia.

Scientists at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute in Portland are working with federal officials and fisherman to study the monkfish’s behavior and biology and help managers make sure its commercial appeal doesn’t hurt its population. They told the Portland Press Herald that the study is going high-tech, with researchers implanting electronic sensors in the fish so their environment can be monitored.

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