No endangered listing for prized pinto abalone – AP

Pinto abalone used to be common around the Salish Sea, but after decades of bottom trawling, and over harvesting, their numbers have radically declined. They also prove to be very difficult to farm commercially, with limited success of cultivation. While the article states that they were never commercially harvested here, that is somewhat incorrect. Many people who were working in the area that I have interviewed have told of the destruction of the abalone beds during the 70s in particular as they became part of the catch of the bottom trawling industry. This coincided with sea urchin and many other bottom dwellers in bays and nearshore areas around the Sound.

The National Marine Fisheries Service has declined to list a prized 6-inch Pacific Ocean marine snail as an endangered or threatened species. The federal agency announced this week that its status review found the pinto abalone is not currently in danger of extinction and does not warrant federal protection under the Endangered Species Act at this time. Pinto abalone, valued for its delicate flavor and mother-of-pearl shell, are found from Alaska to Baja California. Two conservation groups petitioned the agency in July 2013 to conduct a status review for pinto abalone. Phuong Le reports. (Associated Press)

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