Electronic Monitoring for Alaska Groundfish and Halibut/Sablefish Fisheries
Electronic Monitoring (Video)
Electronic monitoring gear.
A number of electronic monitoring technologies have been applied to fisheries monitoring. Video based technologies are of increasing interest, and are being used in several applications in the North Pacific and elsewhere. Within the North Pacific, video technology has been proposed as a potential way to supplement existing observer coverage; enhance the value of the data NMFS receives; and/or fill data gaps that have proven difficult to fill with human observers. Some video applications are in place, while others are being developed or are under consideration.
NMFS, working with the Council, has developed an Electronic Monitoring/Electronic Reporting (EM/ER) strategic plan that will guide development and implementation of electronic monitoring tools in the North Pacific.
In 2013 and 2014, NMFS is conducting an electronic monitoring pilot project in Alaska that provides EM equipment (video cameras) to vessels that volunteer. The EM pilot project evaluates the efficacy of video cameras to collect catch, discard, and fishing effort data in Alaska and is focused on vessels between 40-57.5 ft. in length that fish with hook and line gear.
Currently Implemented Electronic Monitoring Programs
Electronic Monitoring is currently being used as a compliance monitoring tool in several catch share programs in Alaska. Amendment 80 and the Central Gulf of Alaska Rockfish Program allow catcher processors to select a monitoring option, one of which includes the use of video, to ensure that the observer is able to determine that no sorting has occurred prior to the collection of a species composition sample. Chinook Salmon Bycatch Management measures for AFA catcher processors required the use of video to ensure that all salmon are sorted and stored according to the regulatory requirements. Finally, EM is used by the BSAI Freezer longline fleet to ensure that all Pacific cod and only Pacific cod pass over the motion compensated flow scale.
NMFS and industry have conducted several case studies and pilot projects exploring the use of electronic monitoring in Alaska:
- Assessment of Electronic Monitoring to quantify discards in the Central Gulf of Alaska Rockfish Fishery
- Case study on the applicability of video technology for longline fisheries management
- Bycatch characterization in the Pacific halibut fishery: A field test of electronic monitoring technology
- Final Report on project to test Trainable Video Analytic Software
- Alaska Longline Fishermen's Association Project to test video on small fixed gear vessels in southeast Alaska
Workshops and Discussion Papers
- NOAA Fisheries Office of Policy and EM Working Group Electronic Monitoring White Papers, February 2013
- Discussion paper presented by NMFS to North Pacific Fishery Management Council: Use of Electronic Monitoring (EM) Technologies in Alaskan Fisheries, June 2011
- An Electronic Fisheries Monitoring Workshop was conducted July 29-30, 2008 to assess the current status of video monitoring technology for fisheries, its applicability to research and management in the North Pacific, its future potential, and research and development needs. Electronic Fisheries Monitoring Workshop Proceedings
- Discussion paper presented by NMFS to Council: Issues Associated with Large Scale Implementation of Video Monitoring, May 2006
If you are a vessel owner in the vessel selection pool and are interested in participating in the EM pilot project, contact:
AFSC Observer Program
For questions regarding the regulatory development of EM or general EM questions contact either:
NMFS At-Sea Scales Program Coordinator
2245 CO Bar Trail
Flagstaff, AZ 86001
CMP/CMCP Program Coordinator
PO Box 21668
Juneau, AK 99802
PH: (907)-586-7537 or (907)-586-7228