Link to NMFS Homepage Link to NOAA Homepage Keyboard Navigation Alaska Fisheries Science Center Home banner
Error processing SSI file

NPAFC Research Meeting

Dr. Loh-Lee Low chaired the Research Planning and Coordinating Meeting of the North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission (NPAFC) on 21-22 April 2005 at the Pacific Biological Station (PBS), Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Nanaimo, British Columbia. In attendance were salmon research scientists from the member Parties: Canada, Japan, Korea, and the United States.

The Parties reported on their national research plans and stated that their research in 2005 would essentially remain the same as in 2004 except for the following. Genetic stock identification studies using allozymes are being phased out in U.S. government laboratories and replaced by studies using DNA techniques. The United States also suggested a new method for collecting DNA samples in 2005 from fin clips preserved in alcohol to scrape scale samples placed in paper envelopes that could be stored dry at room temperature and would greatly simplify the specimen collection and transporting process.

For cruises, the Japanese Party reported that the sampling area and season of its BASIS (Bering-Aleutians Salmon International Studies) cruise by the Japanese research vessel Kaiyo maru will shift from the central Bering Sea during summer months to an area south of the Aleutian Islands during the winter months. This would be a 50-day survey. The cruise has generated much interest from scientists of other Parties who wish to participate as it will be a rare opportunity to sample the northern Pacific Ocean during the winter-spring period.

The Parties are also drafting a new 5-year NPAFC Science Plan to cover the 2006-2010 research period. An ecosystem approach on a broader temporal (seasonal) scale was suggested to become a keener focus of the BASIS research activities beyond the current 5-year plan. This would provide the kind of scientific data that would be needed for conservation and management of salmon in this new era of climate change in the Bering Sea.

The Parties also worked on an international system of otolith marking of the salmon stocks. To resolve issues of mark duplication, it was suggested that a system of country-specific codes be incorporated in the marking process. One researcher suggested using a short, specific coded pattern in the prehatch otolith region that would identify fish from each nation. Presentation of this and other proposals generated a great deal of discussion regarding different methods of marking and many significant issues that could impact adoption of a country code system.

Finally, the NPAFC took the lead in organizing the following two events:

AFS-BASIS Symposium—Anchorage, September 2005. A 1-day symposium, "Science Bridging Five Nations: The Bering-Aleutian Salmon International Survey," will be held at the 135th American Fisheries Society (AFS) Annual Meeting in Anchorage, Alaska, on 14 September 2005. The theme of the 2005 AFS Annual Meeting (11–15 September, Anchorage) is "Creating a Fisheries Mosaic; Connections Across Jurisdictions, Disciplines, and Cultures." Information on the program, registration, travel, is online at:

NPAFC-PICES Joint Symposium—A joint symposium on "The Status of Pacific Salmon and Their Role in North Pacific Marine Ecosystems" will be held 30 October -1 November 2005 at Jeju Island, Republic of Korea. The event will be held immediately after the 2005 annual meeting of the NPAFC. Twenty-five oral and some poster presentations are expected at the symposium.

By Loh- Lee Low


Quarterly sidebar Contents


ABL Reports

NMML Reports

RACE Reports

REFM Reports


Quarterly Index

Quarterly Home