Researchers Complete Fall Leg of Gulf of Maine Bottom Longline Survey

HYANNIS – The fall leg of the Cooperative Gulf of Maine Bottom Longline Survey by NOAA researchers was completed in early November.

Northeast Fisheries Science Center researchers, with the help of two commercial fishing vessels, collected data on fish species that prefer rocky habitat and are not well sampled by trawl gear.

The species include white and red hake, haddock, Atlantic cod, cusk, redfish, Atlantic halibut, Atlantic wolfish and some skates.

The survey provides critical age and maturity data which could help to significantly improve stock assessments.

The four-week effort collected hundreds of samples.

This is the fourth straight year the survey has been conducted. In the first three years, the survey has collected more than 6,200 life history samples and 1,300 samples for detailed reproductive and ageing studies.

Thirty-six species were caught in the first three years of the survey, 17 of which are considered “data-rich” species.

The F/V Tenacious II captained by Eric Hess assisted with the collection departing from Sesuit Harbor in East Dennis.

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