June 02, 2020
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Maine elver fishing enters first weekend of delayed year

Robert F. Bukaty | AP
Robert F. Bukaty | AP
In this May 25, 2017, file photo, elver fishermen set up a net on the Penobscot River in Brewer.

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Maine’s baby eel fishing season is entering its first full weekend, two weeks after it was originally slated to begin.

Maine Marine Resources Commissioner Patrick Keliher delayed the start of the eel fishing season from March 22 to March 30 because of concerns about coronavirus. The state has since announced practices designed to help the fishermen limit spread of the disease.

The baby eels are called elvers and they’re often worth more than $2,000 per pound. They’re harvested in rivers and streams and sold to Asian aquaculture companies that use them as seed stock. The eels are raised to maturity, and some come back to the U.S. for use in Japanese restaurants.

The season is scheduled to run to June 7.

 


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