Report shows NC fishermen caught and sold a rising number of fish in 2015

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MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. (WITN) - A new report says North Carolina's commercial fishermen caught and sold an increasing number of fish for the second year in the row.

According to the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries, 66 million pounds of finfish and shellfish were sold to seafood dealers in 2015, which was 6.8% more than in 2014. The five-year average is 60.5 million pounds. Revenues also increased, with the value of the fish at $104 million, which also tops the five-year average.

The agency credits the mild weather for allowing the fishermen to work late in the year into the early winter of 2015.

The Division of Marine Fisheries notes that more shrimp and hard crabs were caught during the latter months and say the other top three species caught, spiny dogfish landings, summer flounder and Atlantic croaker, decreased from 2014 to 2015.