| Comparison of invertebrate abundances in four bays of the northeastern United States : two bays with sparse quahogs and two bays with abundant quahogs - :5359 | National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)
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Comparison of invertebrate abundances in four bays of the northeastern United States : two bays with sparse quahogs and two bays with abundant quahogs
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    "Northern quahogs, Mercenaria mercenaria, have been harvested in eastern North America for centuries (MacKenzie and Burrell, 1997). The bays from Rhode Island through New Jersey have been principal harvesting areas (Figure 1). In the 1960s and 1970s, Great South Bay in Long Island, New York, accounted for around half the total U. S. production of quahogs, as many as 700,000 bushels a year (Anonymous, 1987). In 1879, Barnegat Bay, New Jersey, produced 150,000 bushels of quahogs (Ingersoll, 1887), and as late as the early 1970s it yielded as many as 100,000 bushels (Ford, 1997). Since then, quahog landings in Great South Bay and Barnegat Bay have fallen sharply, and in 2000 Great South Bay produced about 3% (20,000 bushels of quahogs) of peak harvests in the 1960s and 1970s (D. Barnes1), and Barnegat Bay produced 0.6% (600 bushels) of the harvest in the early 1970s (P. Lauer2). In contrast, quahog harvests/fisherman from Point Judith Pond, RI, have been large because the pond has large stocks of quahogs, and in the 1990s and through 2002, quahog landings from Raritan Bay, NY and NJ, actually rose to about 150,000 bushels/year (MacKenzie and Pikanowski, 1999; MacKenzie et al., In Press; and recent data). The quahogs in Point Judith Pond (12-15 fishermen year-round) and Raritan Bay (180 fishermen) have been heavily harvested"--Introduction.

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