Proper management of fisheries requires adequate monitoring and data collection
programs. Without any field based information it becomes a guessing game as
to what is happening in the real world. Pacific Coast Fishery Services
been actively involved in various fisheries providing the necessary communication
conduit between commercial fishers and DFO management and enforcement. Furthermore,
we have implemented and continue to operate both biological sampling and
electronic monitoring programs.
Biological sampling of commercial fish species is needed to better ascertain the
general health of a fishery. Usually this is performed on an area to area
basis with sampling centered around active fishing locations. The method of
sampling PCFS performs involves rendezvousing with commercial fishers on the
water. The challenging part can be finding vessels in some very remote corners
of the BC coastline and this is where the experience and knowledge of PCFS
comes in handy.
Biological sampling used together with other
sources of information such as communication with commercial fishers, sports fishers
and First Nations plays an integral part in making good management decisions.
Electronic Monitoring has become an important tool for resource managers, enforcement
officers and fishers in better managing a fishery. Fishing vessels are equipped
with tamper proof electronic monitoring devices that record location and fishing
activities. This data is then analysed and used to determine numerous aspects of
a fishery;such as, closed area fishing, gear counts, gear theft and fishing effort.
PCFS has been involved with electronic monitoring since 2002 and has pioneered
various types of electronic monitoring systems, each utilizing different technologies.
PCFS currently maintains the electronic monitoring system for the commercial crab fisheries in areas B,E,G,H,I
and J .