The Plight of the Fishermen

    On Tuesday evening outside at the Gin Beach Market in Montauk, a film titled “Salt of the Sea — How Politics, Economics, and Danger Push Fishermen to Their Limits, and Beyond” will be presented by Third Wave Films and hosted by the Long Island Commercial Fishing Association.
    Tom Garber, who wrote and produced “Salt of the Sea,” described it as the story of what happens when traditions of self-reliance and independence clash with federal bureaucracy and corruption.
    Bonnie Brady, executive director of the association, said the film was a good primer for the public on what commercial fishermen in this country have been facing in the last several years, including the science behind the regulations and the scandal revealed by the Commerce Department’s inspector general’s report on excesses within the National Marine Fisheries Service enforcement wing.
    The film will be shown in the field behind the Gin Beach Market. Ms. Brady advised viewers to take a blanket or lawn chair. Nancy Atlas, who provided music for the film’s soundtrack, will play a 30-minute set before sunset, then there will be a few words from the producer before the film begins at 8:30. It runs a little over an hour.
    In other commercial fishing news, Emerson Hasbrouck of the County Cooperative Extension has announced a new initiative of the Commercial Fisheries Research Foundation. The Gear Trials Program will give financial assistance to fishermen in the southern New England area who are willing to install one or both of two new gear types to test their performance.
    The intent is to provide industry members with an opportunity to try new gear in a wide range of small-mesh fisheries such as squid, whiting, and scup, and then report on their findings. The program is part of a challenge grant initiative aimed at reducing the bycatch of winter flounder in small-mesh fisheries.
    Mr. Hasbrouck also announced that work was under way to test a “topless” trawl to be used in the fluke fishery. The trawl is designed to release sea turtles from the net unharmed. Mr. Hasbrouck can be reached at 727-7850.