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Annual Deployment Plans for Observers in the Groundfish and Halibut Fisheries off Alaska 2013-2017

June 07, 2022

The Annual Deployment Plans document NOAA Fisheries plans to assign observers to collect independent information from fishing operations conducted under the authority of the Fishery Management Plans for the Bering Sea Aleutian Islands and Gulf of Alaska.

The Annual Deployment Plan (ADP) describes the science-driven method for observer deployment to support statistically reliable data collection. The ADP is a core element in implementation of section 313 of the MSA (16 U.S.C 1862), which authorizes the North Pacific Fishery Management Council to prepare a fisheries research plan that requires the deployment of observers into the North Pacific fisheries and establishes a system of fees. The purpose of the research plan is to collect data necessary for the conservation, management, and scientific understanding of the groundfish and halibut fisheries off Alaska.

Data collection by observers contributes to the best available scientific information used to manage the fisheries in the North Pacific. Information collected by observers provides a reliable and verifiable method for NMFS to gain fishery discard and biological information on fish, and data concerning seabird and marine mammal interactions with fisheries. Observers collect biological samples such as species composition, weights, and tissue samples and information on total catch, including bycatch, and interactions with protected species. Managers use data collected by observers to manage groundfish catch and bycatch limits established in regulation and to document fishery interactions with protected resources. Managers also use data collected by observers to inform the development of management measures that minimize bycatch and reduce fishery interactions with protected resources. Scientists use observer-collected data for stock assessments and marine ecosystem research. Much of this information is expeditiously available (e.g., daily or at the end of a trip, depending on the type of vessel) to ensure effective management.

View 2013 Annual Deployment Plan (PDF, 83 pages)

View 2014 Annual Deployment Plan (PDF, 48 pages)

View 2015 Annual Deployment Plan (PDF, 34 pages)

View 2016 Annual Deployment Plan (PDF, 38 pages)

View 2017 Annual Deployment Plan (PDF, 30 pages)

Last updated by Alaska Regional Office on 06/17/2022

Observer Program North Pacific Observer Program Alaska Groundfish Management Fisheries Monitoring and Analysis