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About the Industry

Maryland’s Fisheries

Skipjacks at the dock

Maryland is renowned for its robust seafood industry. Today, watermen and fisheries managers are collaborating to preserve the commercial fisheries of the Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean. Innovative management and marketing techniques are being brought together to energize the commercial fishing industry. Commercial landings include Atlantic Croaker, Black Sea Bass, Bluefish, Blue Catfish Blue Crab, Eastern Oyster, Hard Clam, Norfolk Spot, Northern Snakehead, Sea Scallops, Spanish Mackerel, Spiny Dogfish, Spotted Sea Trout, Striped Bass (Rockfish), Summer Flounder, White Perch, and Yellow Perch. These species are prominently featured in the best restaurants and retail markets throughout the region.

Civilizations and communities dating back thousands of years have relied on the harvests of fish and shellfish for survival and their livelihood. Commercial fishing has occurred in Maryland for more than 300 years. Early records show millions of pounds of Atlantic Menhaden, Rockfish, shad, and Oysters being harvested every year. Commercial fishing rapidly expanded in the 19th century with annual landings of as much as 48 million pounds of Shad and millions of bushels of oysters.

Maryland’s fisheries and seafood industry continues to improve and adapt through innovation and technology. With the dedication of some of the country’s best scientists, Maryland is proud to promote sustainability managed fisheries and a resilient commercial fishing industry.

True Blue Crabcake