SEFSC pelagic observer program data summary for 2005 & 2006
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SEFSC pelagic observer program data summary for 2005 & 2006

Filetype[PDF-1.55 MB]


  • Alternative Title:
    Pelagic observer program data summary for 2005 & 2006;Pelagic observer program data summary for 2005 and 2006;
  • Description:
    "In 1992, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) initiated scientific sampling of the U.S. large pelagic fisheries longline fleet, as mandated by the U.S. Swordfish Fisheries Management Plan and subsequently the Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan (1998). Scientific observers were placed aboard commercial vessels participating in the Atlantic large pelagic fishery by the Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC) and the Northeast Fisheries Science Center (NEFSC). In 1997, the SEFSC assumed sole responsibility for observer coverage of the pelagic longline fleet. As described in previous documents (Keene et al. 2007), observer coverage by the Pelagic Observer Program (POP) since 1992 has been based on NMFS-employed observers, independent contracted personnel, and personnel supplied by observer provider companies. In the summer of 2006 the POP was authorized to retain all of it's observers through a contract observer provider, eliminating independent government contracts. The SEFSC POP trains scientific observers to record detailed information concerning gear characteristics, location and time the gear is set and retrieved, environmental conditions, status and action of the marine life caught by the gear (alive or dead, kept or discarded), as well as morphometric measurements (length and weight) and sex identification of the animal. Observers also record incidental interactions with marine mammals, sea turtles, fishes, and sea birds. Collections of biological samples (anal fin rays, heads, reproductive tissue, biopsy punch tissue samples, vertebral centra, skin patches, otoliths, etc.) from some species are used to support research studies pertaining to identification, biology and life history of fishes, turtles, and mammals. Tags are deployed and recovered when possible and data is returned to the proper science division. Experiments are conducted on occasion by NMFS and other biologists via the POP. The data from these trips are isolated in the database, but continue to further scientific and statistical analyses. The data collected by the POP are used by scientists in a variety of ways. Observed catch and effort data help confirm and augment the information provided through the mandatory submission of Pelagic Logbook forms by vessel owners and operators. This information is also important in evaluating the effectiveness of management measures, as well as providing information for evaluating the stock status of harvested marine species. The purpose of this document is to provide a general overview of the POP and summarize the data collected in the northwestern Atlantic by the SEFSC during the years 2005 and 2006"--Introduction.
  • Content Notes:
    Kenneth F. Keene, Lawrence R. Beerkircher, and Dennis W. Lee.

    "May 2010."

    System requirements: Adobe Acrobat Reader.

    Includes bibliographical references (page 16).

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    Public Domain
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