Glass eels are immature eels that are small and transparent. After being born in the Sargasso Sea, they swim back to freshwater rivers and ponds to live out their adult lives.
They can gather in the mouths of Connecticut River by the thousands. They’re a great delicacy in Asia, and they sell for thousands of dollars a pound.
A bill passed by the General assembly in May would have established a legal season for glass eel fishing in the state. On Friday. Gov. Dannel Malloy vetod it.
Environmentalists cheered the veto. Because eels are in decline throughout the eastern United States, establishing a fishing season for them would have only hurried that decline, they said.
“We thank the Governor for vetoing this bill, which would have put already-threatened American eel at greater risk,” said Leah Lopez Schmalz. director of legislative and legal affairs for Save the Sound.
“Glass eels are a crucial part of the marine food web, not just in the Sound but in rivers throughout the Northeast and in the Atlantic.” Schmalz said. ” Save the Sound and the state of Connecticut have devoted significant funds to restoring safe migratory access for these eels in rivers across the state, and we’re pleased they’ll continue to be protected from fishing so they can return to the abundance they once enjoyed.”