Catch reporting

Catch reporting

Catch reporting is a part of Monitoring control and surveillance of Commercial fishing. Depending on national and local fisheries management practices, catch reports may reveal illegal fishing practices, or simply indicate that a given area is being overfished.

Manual Catch Reporting

The general industry practice is to write out a catch report on paper, and present it to a fisheries management official when they return to port. If information does not seem plausible to the official, the report may be verified by physical inspection of the catch. Alternatively, a suspicious vessel may need to carry an independent observer on future voyages.

emi-automated Catch Reporting

Some Vessel monitoring systems have features that collect, from keyboard input, the data that constitutes a catch report for the entire voyage. More advanced systems periodically transmit the current catch as electronic mail, so fisheries management centers can determine if a controlled area needs to be closed to further fishing.

While there is no standardization as yet for catch reports, a starting point came from an 1981 Conference of Experts [ [ Expert Consultation on Monitoring, Control and Surveillance Systems for Fisheries Management] ] :

* Catch on entry to each controlled area
* Weekly catch
* Transshipment
* Port of landing
* Catch on exiting a controlled area
* Days at sea
* Daily time at sea
* Seasonal catch limits
* Per-trip catch limits
* Limits on catch within certain areas
* Individual (vessel) transferable quotas
* Minimum or maximum fish (or shellfish) sizes

This was extended, in 1993, to include: [ "Community-based fishery management: towards the restoration of traditional practices in the South Pacific", "Marine Policy" 17(2): 108-117 1993] to include the measurement of:
* catch
* species composition
* fishing effort
* Bycatch (i.e., species unintentionally caught, such as dolphins in tuna fishery)
* area of operations

A number of programs require tracking of days at sea (DAS) for a given vessel. They may require tracking the total cumulative catch of a given fishery.

Major Trends

Where the local fishery economy permits, perhaps with international funding, near-real-time catch reporting will become a basic feature of vessel management systems. Software at fisheries management centers will cross-correlate VMS position information, catch reports, and spot inspection reports.


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