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CLOSED: NPRB Observer Coverage

The goal of this study is to compare and evaluate the effectiveness of electronic monitoring (EM) and the currently utilized National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), North Pacific Groundfish Observer Program (NPGOP) monitoring methods to operate effectively in a commercial longline (hook-and-line) setting. This is a cooperative study with the NMFS, International Pacific Halibut Commission (IPHC), Pacific States Marine Fishery Commission (PSMFC), and the commercial fishing industry.

For each trip conducted as part of the study, the vessel will have EM equipment installed and, depending on the size of the vessel, one or two observers providing coverage thereby allowing side-by-side comparisons of EM and observer data. There may be two to four vessels fishing simultaneously. Hence, a total of two to eight observers are required in each phase of the research. It is preferable to have the same observers participating in the study for the entire study period. Depending on the size and number of the vessels participating on the study, fewer observers may be required.

Currently, the larger boats typically participating in the halibut fishery may also target sablefish during the same haul or trip. These vessels are therefore required to carry and pay for a NMFS-certified observer for 30% of their fishing days during each calendar quarter for the sablefish fishery. For this project, that relationship will change and PSMFC will pay the observer contractor directly after confirming observer deployment. Only those observers arranged through NMFS/PSMFC for this study will be paid through this project.

Download RFP Jan. 4, 2007 alt text