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Old 01-01-2014, 05:19 PM   #1
SpearMax
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Arrow The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

I am starting this thread to enable us to discuss a regulatory subject that is very important to spearfishers in the Southeastern USA. The SEDAR (SouthEast Data, Assessment, and Review) Hogfish scientific assessment is upon us now in 2014. Note the webinars coming in the next few weeks and that within 6 months the results will be sent to the Councils and FWC for potential new regulations. Now is the time for us to generate some intelligent and useful input to the process.

Here is the time table:

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Old 01-01-2014, 05:25 PM   #2
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Post The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

Some documents we can start looking at are linked here:

http://www.sefsc.noaa.gov/sedar/down...df?id=DOCUMENT

http://www.sefsc.noaa.gov/sedar/down...df?id=DOCUMENT

http://www.sefsc.noaa.gov/sedar/down...df?id=DOCUMENT

I encourage interested parties to save or print these documents and study them carefully.

I have taken some of the slides and blown them up and added the text separately in the following posts so they can be quoted easily in the discussion on this thread.

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Old 01-01-2014, 05:34 PM   #3
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The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

FROM PAGE 6:



Recently biologists at the FWCC-FWRI in collaboration with fishermen have been compiling genetics data on hogfish, in order to determine how connected different populations are. What they have found, which they are currently finalizing for submission to a peer-review journal, is that hogfish can be grouped into three distinct stocks: (1) the West Florida Shelf, (2) The Florida Keys through Sebastian Inlet, and (3) North Carolina. The data suggests that very limited movements occur between the locations, and as such they should be treated as separate stocks. The break between the West Florida Shelf and the Florida Keys also supports differences in the habitat used by hogfish and the fisheries operating in these locations.

Given these results, we will model these populations as separate for the assessment. Because there were no samples currently available between N Florida and N Carolina in order to determine the location of the genetic break, all Florida landings will be included with the SE Florida stock, and all landings north of Florida (GA, SC) will be included with N. Carolina. For the WFS, only those landings within Florida north of the Keys will be included, since limited data exist to suggest hogfish are caught in any appreciable amount for the other Gulf states.
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Old 01-01-2014, 05:38 PM   #4
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The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

FROM PAGE 14:



Breaking down the landings by gear type and regions within Florida, the most reliable data are from 1994 to present when these data were required on the Florida trip tickets, while those previous to 1994 are only rough estimates.

Historically the majority of landings were recorded as hook and line in the Florida Keys, but this has shifted to primarily being a spear fishery in the West Florida Shelf during the last ten years.
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Old 01-01-2014, 05:42 PM   #5
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The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

FROM PAGE 15:



Comparing commercial landings to recreational landings by state, the recreational landings represent the majority of the total harvest for hogfish across states, and this is primarily from Florida.

It is important to note that the estimated harvest from recreational fishermen for hogfish is highly variable, as can be seen in the graph, due to poor data accuracy.
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Old 01-01-2014, 05:45 PM   #6
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The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

FROM PAGE 16:



One can look at trends in abundance as inferred from different fisheries dependent data sources. These figures show the estimated trends in abundance, with confidence intervals in gray, for the Florida Keys.

The top two figures are estimated trends in abundance from spear fishermen (commercial and recreational), while the bottom presents the estimated abundance from hook and line recreational fishermen.

Overall, the trends in abundance for the Florida Keys and Southeast Florida have remained relatively stable, with some evidence of a declining trend in more recent years.
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Old 01-01-2014, 05:48 PM   #7
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The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

FROM PAGE 17:



These figures present the trends in abundance for the West Florida Shelf. The top two, generated from commercial and recreational spear fishermen, suggest an increasing trend in abundance over the last 7 years since roughly 2005.

It is important to note that changes in how fish are targeted can impact these estimates of abundance trends from fisheries dependent data (e.g., hogfish being targeted more often as other fisheries have become restricted).
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Old 01-01-2014, 05:50 PM   #8
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The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

FROM PAGE 18:



This figure presents the size composition of landings in inches from the recreational data, for the different areas. One can see that the majority of fish are harvested at 12 inches, with few fish greater than 20 inches within Florida (W FL= West Florida Shelf; FL Keys=Keys; SE FL = Miami-Dade through Indian River counties; SA = GA, SC, and NC). Note that larger fish make up a greater proportion of the landings for states north of Florida.
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Old 01-01-2014, 05:52 PM   #9
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The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

FROM PAGE 20:



The REEF visual surveys can be used to generate an index of abundance for different regions, as shown here for the the Florida Keys and SE Florida. Overall, these data suggest a relatively stable abundance during the last 10 years, albeit lower than the preceding five years (late 90ís, early 2000ís).
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Old 01-01-2014, 05:54 PM   #10
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The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

FROM PAGE 21:



The West Florida Shelf estimated abundance trend from the REEF surveys is highly variable, and is susceptible to showing strong yearly changes, especially for years with a fewer number of surveys (e.g., 2005).

Overall however, these data suggest a generally stable abundance without any evident trends over time.
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Old 01-01-2014, 05:57 PM   #11
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The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

FROM PAGE 22:



The other fisheries independent surveys from the West Florida Shelf are generally highly variable, particularly for those surveys over longer time frames (e.g., Baitfish trawls, Video surveys).

There is some evidence of an increasing trend in more recent years from the multiple surveys, particularly comparing 2011 and 2012.
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Old 01-01-2014, 06:08 PM   #12
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Question Re: The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpearMax View Post
FROM PAGE 6:

Given these results, we will model these populations as separate for the assessment. Because there were no samples currently available between N Florida and N Carolina in order to determine the location of the genetic break, all Florida landings will be included with the SE Florida stock, and all landings north of Florida (GA, SC) will be included with N. Carolina. For the WFS, only those landings within Florida north of the Keys will be included, since limited data exist to suggest hogfish are caught in any appreciable amount for the other Gulf states.
Let me kick off this discussion thread with a few questions and/or observations of mine.

Could in the coming months some spearboard members provide hogfish samples for genetic analysis between N. Florida and N. Carolina and the other Gulf States?

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Old 01-01-2014, 06:13 PM   #13
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Question Re: The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpearMax View Post
FROM PAGE 14:

Breaking down the landings by gear type and regions within Florida, the most reliable data are from 1994 to present when these data were required on the Florida trip tickets, while those previous to 1994 are only rough estimates.

Historically the majority of landings were recorded as hook and line in the Florida Keys, but this has shifted to primarily being a spear fishery in the West Florida Shelf during the last ten years.
I wonder if this "shift" is real or caused by data collection limitations?

It could be due to more commercial spearos in total numbers.

I wonder if they have the number of licenses broken out by primary gear type so we can see the trends over the past ten years.

Thoughts anyone?

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Old 01-01-2014, 06:17 PM   #14
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Question Re: The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

Quote:
Originally Posted by SpearMax View Post
FROM PAGE 15:

Comparing commercial landings to recreational landings by state, the recreational landings represent the majority of the total harvest for hogfish across states, and this is primarily from Florida.

It is important to note that the estimated harvest from recreational fishermen for hogfish is highly variable, as can be seen in the graph, due to poor data accuracy.
What is the relative proportion in percentages of this important data input variable?

i.e. is recreational 80% (or some other percentage) of the total take?
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Old 01-01-2014, 06:23 PM   #15
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Question Re: The SEDAR 37 Hogfish Assessment Thread 2014

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Originally Posted by SpearMax View Post
FROM PAGE 16:

One can look at trends in abundance as inferred from different fisheries dependent data sources. These figures show the estimated trends in abundance, with confidence intervals in gray, for the Florida Keys.

The top two figures are estimated trends in abundance from spear fishermen (commercial and recreational), while the bottom presents the estimated abundance from hook and line recreational fishermen.

Overall, the trends in abundance for the Florida Keys and Southeast Florida have remained relatively stable, with some evidence of a declining trend in more recent years.
What exactly are these data sources? Surveys?

An overall stable trend in abundance is good news, but what is the evidence of declines in recent years?

What do spearboard members think in their personal observations?
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