A report of the 28th Northeast Regional Stock Assessment Workshop : status of the Cape Cod yellowtail flounder stock for 1998
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A report of the 28th Northeast Regional Stock Assessment Workshop : status of the Cape Cod yellowtail flounder stock for 1998
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  • Alternative Title:
    Status of the Cape Cod yellowtail flounder stock for 1998
  • Description:
    The Cape Cod yellowtail flounder stock was at a medium level of biomass and was overexploited in 1997. Virtual population analysis of total catch, calibrated with research survey indices, indicated that total biomass since the early 1990s remained below the level that can produce maximum sustainable yield (1997 biomass was 2,700 mt, which is 44% of BMSY 6,100 mt). Fishing mortality generally decreased in the mid 1990s; fully-recruited F in 1997 was 0.64 (43% exploitation rate), and F on total biomass was 0.41 (31% exploitation). Age-l recruitment averaged 7 million fish from 1988-1995, but the 1996 year class is about half the long term average. The estimated level of biomass in 1998 is 2,900 mt and fully-recruited F is projected to increase to 1.01. Relative to the Amendment 9 overfishing definition and its associated control rule, which is based on a surplus production model, the stock is over fished, and overfishing is occurring (threshold F = 0.13 on biomass, 0.23 on fully-recruited ages). Applying the Amendment 9 control rule to the 1998 total stock biomass implies a fishing mortality target rate of 0 in 1999. Projections suggest that catch and biomass will decline in 1999 as the apparently poor 1996 year class recruits to the fishery. Projected 2000 biomass remains below Y, BMSY at status quo harvest rates, but can substantially increase at low F.
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