Presentation Abstract

In Puget Sound, WA, rockfish abundance declined significantly over the last 50+ years as a result of fishing pressure, life-history characteristics and the isolated geography of Puget Sound. In 2010, three species of rockfish were listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA): yelloweye rockfish, canary rockfish and bocaccio. Due to a general lack of data specific to these three species, data from other rockfish species were used to support the listings. Since the listings, targeted research and recovery planning has begun to address major data gaps for these three species. First, cooperative research with the recreational fishing community has revealed that yelloweye rockfish are genetically distinct from coastal populations, whereas canary rockfish are not distinct - which has led to canary rockfish being delisted, the first delisting of a marine fish. Second, an ROV survey has been designed specifically to provide a path forward to estimate changes in abundance of listed rockfish in Puget Sound. Third, the Rockfish Recovery Plan for yelloweye rockfish and bocaccio has been published. This plan provides, and we have begun to address, a list of research activities related to environmental conditions and human activities that might constrain rockfish recovery. Two ongoing studies examine whether specific environmental covariates (e.g. dissolved oxygen) alter the movement and foraging behavior of yelloweye rockfish and whether rockfish bycatch can be reduced in the recreational lingcod fishery by using specific bait types. Finally, we will discuss the criteria to be used for delisting these species under the ESA, including statistical methods and operational challenges.

Session Title

Recovery and Monitoring for ESA-listed Rockfish and Habitats in the Salish Sea

Keywords

Rockfish, Endangered species, Recreational fishing, Recovery, Delisting

Conference Track

SSE11: Species and Food Webs

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (Seattle, WA : 2018)

Document Type

Event

SSEC Identifier

SSE11-155

Start Date

4-4-2018 3:30 PM

End Date

4-4-2018 3:45 PM

Type of Presentation

Oral

Contributing Repository

Digital content made available by University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Geographic Coverage

Salish Sea (B.C. and Wash.)

Rights

This resource is displayed for educational purposes only and may be subject to U.S. and international copyright laws. For more information about rights or obtaining copies of this resource, please contact University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA 98225-9103, USA (360-650-7534; heritage.resources@wwu.edu) and refer to the collection name and identifier. Any materials cited must be attributed to the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference Records, University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Type

text

Language

English

Format

application/pdf

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Apr 4th, 3:30 PM Apr 4th, 3:45 PM

ESA-listed Puget Sound rockfish: How did we get here and how do we assess progress towards recovery planning goals?

In Puget Sound, WA, rockfish abundance declined significantly over the last 50+ years as a result of fishing pressure, life-history characteristics and the isolated geography of Puget Sound. In 2010, three species of rockfish were listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA): yelloweye rockfish, canary rockfish and bocaccio. Due to a general lack of data specific to these three species, data from other rockfish species were used to support the listings. Since the listings, targeted research and recovery planning has begun to address major data gaps for these three species. First, cooperative research with the recreational fishing community has revealed that yelloweye rockfish are genetically distinct from coastal populations, whereas canary rockfish are not distinct - which has led to canary rockfish being delisted, the first delisting of a marine fish. Second, an ROV survey has been designed specifically to provide a path forward to estimate changes in abundance of listed rockfish in Puget Sound. Third, the Rockfish Recovery Plan for yelloweye rockfish and bocaccio has been published. This plan provides, and we have begun to address, a list of research activities related to environmental conditions and human activities that might constrain rockfish recovery. Two ongoing studies examine whether specific environmental covariates (e.g. dissolved oxygen) alter the movement and foraging behavior of yelloweye rockfish and whether rockfish bycatch can be reduced in the recreational lingcod fishery by using specific bait types. Finally, we will discuss the criteria to be used for delisting these species under the ESA, including statistical methods and operational challenges.