Symposium Details

Background

It is timely to hold an international symposium on data-limited and data-poor fish populations that are harvested commercially or recreationally. The Lowell Wakefield Symposium on "Fisheries Assessment and Management in Data-Limited Situations” was held in 2003. Since then, fisheries management around the world has expanded to consider more species and fisheries and to impose more precautionary regulations, such as catch limits. In Alaska data limitations affect management of commercial fisheries, including sharks, rays, octopus, scallops, some crabs and rockfish, and others. Data limitations are pervasive in most other fisheries jurisdictions around the world. Most recreational fisheries are also data-poor.

There is a need for new tools and strategies for setting appropriate catch limits and other regulations for fisheries under data-limited situations. In the United States, much of this has been driven by the requirement to set catch limits for all marine fisheries managed by the federal government. Fisheries assessment and management worldwide are especially difficult when only commercial catch data are available. Catch data may be highly uncertain due to inadequate or incomplete sampling, unreliable estimates of discards, and lack of knowledge about recreational harvests. High levels of uncertainty about stock status and optimum yield associated with inadequate data and science can lead to either overharvest or forgone yield, both of which have negative socioeconomic impacts. Problems are magnified for stocks that are assessed infrequently.

Recreational fisheries are fundamentally different from commercial fisheries in goals (maximize fishing opportunities) and management tools (e.g., bag and size limits). Given the diversity of recreational fisheries and fishermen, it is difficult to collect sufficient data. Management is especially difficult in fisheries with large commercial and recreational sectors, with even greater problems in data limitations.

Goal of the Symposium

The goal of the international symposium is to encourage development of new tools and strategies for assessment and management of data-limited commercial and recreational fisheries in marine and freshwater areas. Presentations are sought on new quantitative stock assessment tools under data limitations, methods to incorporate uncertainty in assessment and management, improved approaches for inclusion of social and economic considerations into management, and strategies for the management of mixed commercial and recreational fisheries. Presentations about new assessment approaches for stocks without routine surveys or indices of abundance are especially welcome. Methods for determining catch limits and alternative management measures to catch limits in data-poor situations are also of great interest.

Registration

The registration fee for the symposium is $275 US ($225 student) if paid on or before April 13, 2015. The late registration fee will be $325 ($275 student) after April 13. If your abstract is accepted for presentation, you must register and pay the symposium fee by April 13 to secure a place on the program. The fee covers continental breakfast and break refreshments daily, a catered reception, symposium materials, and published proceedings. Please register and pay your fees in advance so that adequate materials are available. Payment can be made with credit card or check.

Registration fee refunds: 75% refund for cancellations up to one week prior to symposium; no refund after May 5.

Symposium Sessions

Sessions will be presented on the following data-limited fisheries topics

  1. Potential new types of data for assessment and management
  2. Alternative stock assessment methods
  3. Methods to incorporate uncertainty in assessment and management
  4. Strategies for the management of mixed commercial, recreational, and/or subsistence fisheries
  5. Methods for determining catch limits and alternative management measures

The session “Integration of social and economic considerations into management” has been canceled.

Abstract Submission

To contribute an oral or poster presentation, see the call for abstracts.

Invited Speakers

Keynotes

Doug Butterworth, University of Cape Town, Department of Maths and Applied Maths, Rondebosch, South Africa

John Hoenig, Virginia Institute of Marine Science, Department of Fisheries Science, Gloucester Pt., Virginia, USA

Session 1: Potential new types of data for assessment and management

David Somerton, NOAA Alaska Fisheries Science Center, Seattle, Washington, USA

Session 2: Alternative stock assessment methods

Jason Cope, NOAA Northwest Fisheries Science Center, Seattle, Washington, USA

Session 3: Methods to incorporate uncertainty in assessment and management

Tony Booth, Rhodes University, Department of Ichthyology and Fisheries Science, Grahamstown, South Africa

Session 4: Integration of social and economic considerations into management

Ron Felthoven, NOAA Alaska Fisheries Science Center, Seattle, Washington, USA (canceled)

Session 4: Strategies for the management of mixed commercial, recreational, and/or subsistence fisheries

Steven Cadrin, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, School for Marine Science and Technology, New Bedford, Massachusetts, USA

Session 5: Methods for determining catch limits and alternative management measures

Cathy Dichmont, CSIRO, Cleveland, Queensland, Australia

Natalie Dowling, CSIRO, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

Program

Presentations will begin at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, May 12, and continue until noon on Friday, May 15. The program will be updated as necessary until the time of the meeting.

Events and Activities

Event To Be Held During the Symposium

Tuesday, May 12, 6–9:00 pm. Reception and poster session, Hotel Captain Cook, with appetizers and cash bar.

Optional Activities

Small groups, sign up

On your own activities

Proceedings

Alaska Sea Grant will publish a peer-reviewed proceedings book, including full papers based on oral and poster presentations, soon after the symposium. Members of the steering committee will serve as editors for the symposium proceedings. The publication will be electronic with the possibility of a small number in print. Manuscripts are due during the week of the symposium, May 12–15, 2015. Please see Manuscript Preparation Instructions [PDF; 180 KB].

Students

Some funding will be available for travel for students who will give oral or poster presentations at the symposium. Students whose abstracts are accepted for presentation will be notified in February 2015, in time to apply for travel funds.

Graduate students are invited to join the competition for best oral presentation and best poster. Winners will receive $300 US in equipment. When you submit your abstract, check the box to let us know you wish to enter the competition.

Steering Committee

Symposium Contact Information

Email Sue Keller, symposium coordinator.