The North Pacific Fishery Management Council is preparing a two-hour evening working session to bring together fishermen, stock assessment authors, and SSC members to discuss opportunities for cooperative research to investigate the impacts of sablefish depredation by killer whales and sperm whales from fishing gear in the GOA and BSAI. Cooperative research efforts are those that are designed and implemented with the participation of fishery stakeholders. The working session is not intended to be a science symposium on sablefish depredation by whales, but rather to identify a series of questions that cooperative research may address to improve the understanding of the effects that depredation on sablefish may have on the stock assessment. These questions could include:
- What new information could improve the stock assessment?
- Is there willingness among fishermen to contribute to cooperative research?
- What funding and organizational opportunities exist for cooperative research?
The working session is scheduled for Monday, April 1 from 5 – 7 PM, immediately after the SSC breaks. The public is invited to attend and contribute to this working session.