This DVD includes exciting on-the-water footage, as well as interviews with fishermen and scientists who have participated in the program. In recent years, commercial and recreational fishermen have become more involved in fisheries research throughout the Northeast Region, lending their unique perspective and technical expertise to the scientific process. The mission of the Cooperative Research Partners Program is to guide the management of fishery resources in New England by building cooperative relationships among industry, scientists and managers.
Several recent studies are profiled in the DVD. The development of a rope separator trawl allows fishermen to capture healthy populations of haddock, while allowing overfished cod to escape through a specially designed net. Another project is exploring the impacts of bottom trawling in the Western Gulf of Maine, by comparing the quality of seafloor habitat in open and closed areas. An industry-based survey of cod in the Gulf of Maine is evaluating the importance of inshore areas as nursery and spawning grounds. Recreational and commercial fishermen have tagged more than 114,000 cod; these data are being used to assess migration patterns and collect growth information for stock assessments.
Through the Cooperative Research Partners Program, Federal, state, academic, and private partners are working together in real-life settings to set research priorities, collect and analyze data, and discuss scientific findings. Scientists benefit from increased time at sea and the opportunity to gain local knowledge from fishermen, while captains are compensated for the use of their vessel through monetary payments or the sale of their catch. These cooperative projects have demonstrated success in improving relationships and building a foundation of trust in fisheries science.
In Good Company: NOAA's Northeast Cooperative Research Partners Program in Windows Media player format.
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