NOAA/NMFS Considers Moving Trawl Surveys to Fishing Vessels

no bigelowNOAA Fisheries is initiating a planning process to support its intention to transition part or all of the Northeast Fisheries Science Center’s spring and fall bottom trawl surveys from the NOAA Ship Henry B. Bigelow to fishing industry vessels provided that survey data collection quality and time series integrity can be maintained. “The bottom trawl survey is perhaps the most valuable ecological data set that we maintain at the Center,” said Bill Karp, the center’s director. “Those data are critical for many of the fishery stock assessments in the region and are mined by a wide variety of researchers for other purposes. By sharing the responsibility for gathering these data with the fishing industry, I think there will also come greater shared confidence in the results obtained using them.” Read the rest here 17:12

  • Joel Hovanesian

    Halleluia. I’ll believe it when I see it. Not easy to be an optimist when you are depending on the government these days. Unless of course you are looking to them for a hand out of some sort. Well sort of. If you are looking for relief from out of control fisheries regulations, forget that.
    Here’s the question. If and when this ever gets done, and they see that what fishermen have been telling them for decades turns out to be true, and you can bet the ranch on this one, that there are far more fish than they say, how are they going to repair the lives, families and businesses these draconian rules and regs. have destroyed?

    • MIGHTYJ

      I once went to see the geniuses at the North East Seafood Coalition to tell them that this is what fishermen should be pushing for. Instead of beating up and blaming midwater trawlers for groundfish stock issues that had nothing to do with midwater fishing and were actually helped by a smaller (Less voracious and predatory) herring stock. I wanted to tell them about working with NOAA in private surveys and how effective and helpfull both the improved science (Government can’t catch fish) and the work for local vessels was in Alaska.
      Sadly they were too busy gearbashing midwater trawlers and blaming them for any stock assessment lows while helping draft the plan for sectors that would be the final nail in the coffin of so many small businesses and private owners to listen to a boat engineer from the wrong side of an industry they were so dedicated to dividing against itself.