Take action to support this critical species in the fight for a sustainable fishery.
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Chesapeake Bay Foundation: Saving a National Treasure
Photo of commercial fishing of menhaden
John Surrick/CBF Staff

Dear Friend of the Bay,

We need your urgent help now in restoring and protecting one of the Bay’s most important resources. In late October, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC) found Virginia out of compliance with the fishery management plan for menhaden after Omega Protein harvested 30 percent more menhaden than the ASMFC allotted them in 2017.

The ASMFC’s decision is now with the Department of Commerce for review. Now is the time to raise your voice for menhaden to ensure this plundering of menhaden does not continue. Urge Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross to uphold the ASMFC’s noncompliance finding and hold Omega Protein accountable.


Successful fisheries management only works when all those in the fishery abide by the rules. Unfortunately for menhaden—a critical foundation in the Chesapeake’s food web upon which striped bass, bluefish, and other important species depend—Omega Protein, the foreign company that harvests approximately 65 percent of the coastwide catch, decided it didn’t want to play by the rules.

We can’t allow a foreign company to jeopardize the fisheries management rules that are meant to ensure a healthy menhaden population throughout the Bay. Not to mention, this flagrant noncompliance puts the resources that provide economic and recreational benefits for those of us who call the Chesapeake region home at risk.


Now that Virginia has been unanimously found out of compliance by ASMFC—an unwanted strike against the sound fisheries management program that Virginia has strived to implement—we need you to take action and urge Secretary Ross to compel the Commonwealth and Omega Protein to come into compliance with the fishery management plan. Secretary Ross will make his decision within the next 30 days so please sign our petition today!

Menhaden are integral to a healthy Bay and economy. We must protect them.

Many thanks for taking action,

Photo of Chris Moore

Chris Moore
Senior Regional Ecosystem Scientist
Chesapeake Bay Foundation

Chesapeake Bay Foundation: Saving a National Treasure

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