Data Workshops Scheduled for Atlantic Menhaden Single-Species & Ecological-Based Benchmark Stock Assessments

Data Workshops Scheduled for Atlantic Menhaden Single-Species & Ecological-Based Benchmark Stock Assessments

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Arlington, VA – The Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission has begun work on two Atlantic menhaden-specific benchmark assessments: a single-species benchmark assessment and an ecological-based benchmark assessment. The assessments will be used to evaluate the health of the stock and inform the management of the species in an ecological context. The assessments will be peer-reviewed at the end of 2019.

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Bunker caught from the Inland Bays.

A Data Workshop for both assessments will be conducted the week of April 23rd; details on the location will be released once they become available. The Atlantic Menhaden Technical Committee and Stock Assessment Subcommittee will meet April 23-25 to discuss the single-species assessment and the Ecological Reference Point Workgroup will meet April 25-27 to discuss the ecological-based assessment.

A second Data and Modeling Workshop will be held in September; information on the dates and location will be provided once they are finalized. All Data and Modeling Workshops are open to the public, with the exception of discussions of confidential data, when the public will be asked to leave the room.

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The Commission welcomes the submission of data sources and alternate models that will improve the accuracy of the assessments. This includes, but is not limited to, data on commercial landings and discards, catch per unit effort, biological samples (length or age frequency), and life history information (growth, maturity, fecundity, natural mortality, spawning stock biomass). For the ecological-based assessment, the Commission is also interested in predation information on Atlantic menhaden (i.e., predator diets, consumption rates) and predator stock size information (i.e., Atlantic striped bass, weakfish, bluefish and spiny dogfish). For data sets to be considered, the data must be sent in the required format with accompanying description of methods to Dr. Kristen Anstead, Stock Assessment Scientist, at by Friday, April 6, 2018.

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Bunker or Menhaden used as bait for predatory fish

For alternate models to be considered, the model description, model input, and complete source code must be provided to Dr. Katie Drew, Stock Assessment Team Leader, at by the model deadline. For alternate multispecies or ecosystem models, the deadline is Friday, June 1, 2018. For alternate single species models, the deadline is Thursday, November 1, 2018. Any models submitted without complete, editable source code and input files will not be considered.

For more information about the assessments, the submission and presentation of materials at the Data Workshop, or attending the Data Workshop, please contact Max Appelman, Fishery Management Plan Coordinator, at or 703.842.0740

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