McCleave quoted in Maine Public report on state’s elver fishery

James McCleave, a University of Maine professor emeritus of marine sciences and a leading expert on eels, was quoted in the Maine Public report, “Why Maine is the only state in the US with a ‘significant’ elver fishery.” Eels start out as larvae and for the first few months of their lives, they float with the ocean currents and are eventually carried by the Gulf Stream north along the continental shelf of the eastern U.S., according to the report. Then they find their way out of the Gulf Stream and into coastal and fresh waters, the report states. At this point, they’re about a year old and looking more eel-like, but still transparent. They’re now in the elver, or “glass eel,” stage, and they get “spit out everywhere” along the Atlantic Coast, according to McCleave. Then they more or less stay put in estuaries, rivers and lakes near the coast for decades, getting bigger, fatter and more silvery, Maine Public reported.