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Economic & Social Sciences Research Program

Economic Data Collection Programs

Center economists continued working with NMFS Alaska Regional Office and PSMFC staff to implement the economic data collection program that will be an integral part of the BSAI Crab Rationalization Program. During this quarter, they assisted in completing the following: 1) the draft regulations and preamble for the data collection program; 2) the cooperative agreement under which PSMFC will collect the data; and 3) the terms of reference for the data collection program.

Center economists also provided input to the Task Force for the Reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. Specifically, the economists identified restrictions in the current act that explicitly limit their access to the data required to analyze the effects of fishery management programs and compute the net benefits generated by Alaska fisheries. They also made recommendations for new language that would increase the amount of available economic information.

Community Profiling and Demographics

Christina Package traveled to Dutch Harbor, Unalaska and conducted interviews with local residents to gather information necessary for the profile of the community derived from fieldwork conducted by Dr. Jennifer Sepez during summer 2002. Also, interviews were conducted with native community members who were removed to internment camps during World War II. Information from these interviews will aid in research dealing with history and globalization as it pertains to Unalaska.

New Economist

Alan Haynie, a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Economics at the University of Washington, joined the REFM Division in July 2004. He presented a paper at International Institute of Fisheries Economics and Trade Conference in Japan, “Estimating the Economic Impact of the Steller Sea Lion Conservation Area: Developing and Applying New Methods for Evaluating Spatially Complex Area Closures” (joint with David Layton). Alan has initiated an effort to analyze the effects of real-time bycatch monitoring (through the SeaState Inc., system) on bycatch rates and fishing site location. He will work with academic researchers, AFSC staff, and industry to construct a model that relates fishing choices to the reports presented by SeaState, Inc.

Other Activities

Program staff have been involved in ongoing efforts to 1) implement a comprehensive data collection program for the BSAI crab fisheries; 2) estimate the nonconsumptive value of Steller sea lions; 3) identify and profile fishing communities; 4) develop regional economic impact models; 5) assess the economic effects of the BSAI pollock fishery cooperatives; 6) implement improved electronic reporting of fisheries data; 7) summarize fisheries data for the Economic SAFE report, the NPFMC, industry, environmental organizations, and other stakeholders.

By Ron Felthoven


Estimated production figures for
1 January through 30 September 2004.


Number Aged

Northern rocksole


Yellowfin sole


Arrowtooth flounder


Longhead dab


Walleye pollock


Pacific cod




Atka mackerel


Pacific ocean perch


Northern rockfish


Rougheye rockfish


Light dusky rockfish


Dark dusky rockfish


Total production figures were 27,432 with 8,298 test ages and 130 examined and determined to be unageable.
By Dan Kimura.

Age & Growth Program

International Otolith Symposium

Dan Kimura attended the Third International Otolith Symposium in Townsville, Queensland, Australia, 11 - 17 July 2004 (see Auke Bay Lab report in this issue.). The symposium was hosted by the CRC Reef Research Center and James Cook University. Kimura presented an oral paper “Quality Control of Age Data at the Alaska Fisheries Science Center” and a poster “Is Corroborating Ages a Valid Concept in (walleye pollock, Theragra chalcogramma) Fish Age Determination?” The oral presentation, coauthored by Delsa Anderl, described the quality control procedures used in the ageing lab,  along with new insights into measures of between age reader precision. The poster described current confusion in the meaning of  the terms age “corroboration” and age “validation.” An argument was made concerning the usefulness of age corroboration data in our ageing of walleye pollock. Coauthors of the poster were Alexander Buslov (Kamchatka Research Institute of Fisheries and Oceanography, Russia), and AFSC scientists Betty Goetz, Christopher Gburski, and Craig Kastelle. Written versions of these presentations were submitted for consideration in the planned proceedings.


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