Investing in Recreational Fishing Survey Implementation
A set of national guidelines informs our investments in recreational fishing surveys, as well as the metrics we use to assess Regional Implementation Plans in order to set national priorities.
Our investments in the implementation and operation of recreational fishing surveys are based on a set of national guidelines. These guidelines also inform the metrics the Office of Science and Technology uses to assess Regional Implementation Plans in order to set national program priorities. We strive to support the implementation of certified methods that satisfy minimum science and management needs and result in regional survey programs that achieve MRIP coverage and data standards.
NOAA Fisheries’ investments in the implementation of new recreational fisheries survey methods will be prioritized based upon the extent to which surveys, alone or in combination with other surveys being implemented in a region:
- Use certified survey designs or methodologies.
- Achieve MRIP standards for survey coverage and data elements, as well as any future standards adopted by the program.
- Provide recreational or non-commercial catch estimates for fisheries managed under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act (MSRA)—including Atlantic Highly Migratory Species—or managed jointly by the states and NOAA Fisheries that are sufficient to:
- Contribute to reliable stock assessments.
- Support the development of acceptable biological catch recommendations, annual catch limits (ACLs), and accountability measures that meet MSRA requirements.
- Support the development of recreational regulations that minimize the triggering of accountability measures.
- Allow reasonably precise tracking of recreational catch against ACLs.
While NOAA Fisheries—working through MRIP—maintains a central role in developing and certifying survey methods and establishing national standards and best practices, Regional Implementation Teams are responsible for identifying regional data needs. This task is accomplished through Regional Implementation Plans, which also identify, prioritize, and estimate the cost of additions and improvements to data collection programs.
Each year, the Office of Science and Technology uses the guidelines above to develop metrics for assessing Regional Implementation Plans in order to set national program priorities. To the extent possible, funding for improved survey methods will be permanent and funded survey components will not be subject to prioritization and evaluation in subsequent years.
Funding from MRIP will not be used to replace existing partner funds for recreational fisheries data collection.