Characterization of catch and bycatch in the state gillnet fisheries of Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, 2012-2015
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Characterization of catch and bycatch in the state gillnet fisheries of Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, 2012-2015
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  • Alternative Title:
    State gillnet fisheries of Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, 2012-2015
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  • Description:
    "The Southeast Gillnet Observer Program (SGOP) in the SEFSC-Panama City Laboratory has monitored coastal gillnet fisheries with on-board observers since the program began in 1993 (e.g. Mathers et al. 2015 and references therein). There are numerous active gillnet fisheries in Federal waters of the U.S. Atlantic coast and Gulf of Mexico, but the number of gillnet fishers changes from year to year. Depending on time of the year and market conditions, fishers will target a diversity of species such as Spanish mackerel Scomberomorus maculatus, king mackerel Scomberomorus cavalla, and bluefish Pomatomus saltatrix, as well as sharks and dogfish with varying types of gillnet gear. These fisheries have also resulted in interactions with protected species (i.e. marine mammals, sea turtles, sea birds, Atlantic sturgeon, and sawfish) with 61 observed interactions since 1993. However, most observer effort has occurred in Federal waters and little is known regarding fishing effort, catch, bycatch and interactions with protected species INgillnet vessels operating in State waters. While many states have banned gillnets in state water, some states still permit commercial fishing activities using gillnets to harvest their catch. To better characterize fishing effort, catch and bycatch, and interactions with protected resources, the Southeast Gillnet Observer Program began observer coverage on state documented commercial gillnet vessels in coastal Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama in November 2012. This report describes a summary of observations from 2012 to 2015"--Introduction.
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