Atlantic Coastal Cooperative Statistics Program Releases MRIP Regional Implementation Plan

February 19, 2018

Marina in Mid-Atlantic

The Atlantic Coastal Cooperative Statistics Program has completed an MRIP Regional Implementation Plan (PDF, 16 pages) summarizing the data needs and funding priorities for improving recreational fisheries data collection on the Atlantic Coast. The ACCSP is the state-federal partnership that collects, manages, and disseminates Atlantic commercial and recreational fisheries data.

ACCSP’s Recreational Technical Committee (RTC), an appropriate body of cooperating partners, produced this regional plan , which supports MRIP in its transition from research and development of new data collection methodologies to implementation of new surveys. The plan will help guide MRIP’s allocation of resources to best address the data needs of fishery assessors and managers.

Prioritized Activities

The ACCSP RTC identified the following top priorities for improving recreational data collection on the Atlantic Coast:

  • Improved precision of MRIP catch estimates.
  • Comprehensive for-hire data collection and monitoring.
  • Improved released catch data for recreational fisheries.
  • Biological sampling for recreational fisheries separate from MRIP Access Point Angler Intercept Survey. 
  • Improved spatial resolution and technical guidance for post-stratification of MRIP estimates.
  • Improved timeliness of recreational catch estimates.

ACCSP is committed to providing better data for stock assessment and management through its participation in the collaborative efforts of MRIP and regional partners.  ACCSP will continue to update this plan as new methods are certified or as regional priorities change.

Inaugural Regional Implementation Plans

These inaugural Regional Implementation Plans represent a significant evolution in the course of MRIP, clearly establishing that each region will have a direct role in determining which survey methods are most suitable for their science, stock assessment, and management needs. MRIP will use these plans to develop a national inventory of partner needs and associated costs, and annually specify priority-setting criteria for supporting those needs.

Where possible, each Regional Implementation Plan will provide an analysis of existing programs, detail priorities for coverage, resolution, precision, and timeliness, identify strategies for implementing improved methods, outline processes for integrating data from different sources, and include budget estimates. Every plan will be submitted for a comprehensive review and approval process by MRIP’s Executive Steering Committee.

From a national perspective, these plans will serve to guide MRIP decision-making regarding ongoing research priorities and implementation budget allocation. The Regional Implementation Plans are “living documents,” which will be adjusted as necessary based on changing science and management needs and budget availability, and will be updated every five years.

Applying this collaborative approach to the development and launch of the Regional Implementation Plans is critical to improving recreational fishing data collection efforts and supporting quality fishing opportunities for generations to come.