Appendix D Presentation to the Committee by NMFS Scientists (9 July, 1997, Bedford, Massachusetts)

Agenda

Time

Issue

Presenter

10:00-10:10

Overview, Introductions

M. Sissenwine

10:10-10:20

Stock Assessment Workshop Process, Terms of Reference, Interaction with Canadian Process

E. Anderson

10:20-10:45

Generic Issues: Databases, Survey Calibration, Assessment, and Prediction Methods

S. Murawski

 

Assessments Inputs, Assumptions, Results, and Research Recommendations

S. Murawski

10:45-11:00

Georges Bank Haddock

R. Mayo

11:00-11:15

Georges Bank Cod

R. Mayo

11:15-11:30

Gulf of Maine Cod

R. Mayo

11:30-11:45

Southern New England Yellowtail Flounder

W. Overholtz

11:45-12:00

Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder

W. Overholtz

12:00-12:45

Lunch

 

12:45-1:15

Management Advice, Context with Previous Assessments, A#7/A#5, Canadian Management

M. Sissenwine

1:15-1:45

Questions and Discussion

 



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Appendix D Presentation to the Committee by NMFS Scientists (9 July, 1997, Bedford, Massachusetts) Agenda Time Issue Presenter 10:00-10:10 Overview, Introductions M. Sissenwine 10:10-10:20 Stock Assessment Workshop Process, Terms of Reference, Interaction with Canadian Process E. Anderson 10:20-10:45 Generic Issues: Databases, Survey Calibration, Assessment, and Prediction Methods S. Murawski   Assessments Inputs, Assumptions, Results, and Research Recommendations S. Murawski 10:45-11:00 Georges Bank Haddock R. Mayo 11:00-11:15 Georges Bank Cod R. Mayo 11:15-11:30 Gulf of Maine Cod R. Mayo 11:30-11:45 Southern New England Yellowtail Flounder W. Overholtz 11:45-12:00 Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder W. Overholtz 12:00-12:45 Lunch   12:45-1:15 Management Advice, Context with Previous Assessments, A#7/A#5, Canadian Management M. Sissenwine 1:15-1:45 Questions and Discussion  

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Information Presented   SAW-24 Agenda NORTHEAST REGIONAL STOCK ASSESSMENT WORKSHOP (SAWPROCESS) • Steering Committee • Working Groups • Stock Assessment Review Committee (SARC) • Public Review Workshop • Stocks – Gulf of Maine Cod – Georges Bank Cod – Georges Bank Haddock – Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder – Southern New England Yellowtail Flounder of estimates of stock abundance and fishing mortality rates • Terms of Reference – Assess the stock status through 1996 and characterize the variability – Provide projected estimates of catch for 1997-1998 and SSB for 1998-1999 at various level of F, including all relevant biological reference points – Advise on the assessment and management implications of incorporating recreational catch and commercial discard data in the assessment

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Generic Assessment Issues I Generic Assessment Issues II • Assessment Databases – Changes in Landings Data Collection System – Proration of Landings to Stock Area – Effort & CPUE/LPUE – Rates of Biological Sampling of the Catch – Discard Estimates • Survey Calibration Studies –Vessel/Door/Net Changes over Time –Estimation of Calibration Coefficients –Effects of Alternative Estimation Methods Uncertainty in Assessments < Bootstrap Estimates of Precision in ADAPT < Sensitivity of Assessment Results to Potential Biases < Explicit vs. Implicit Sources of Uncertainty < Conveying Uncertainty to Managers Medium-Term Projections < Utility of Results < Stock Rebuilding Targets < Estimation Methods < Presentation of Results

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Georges Bank Haddock Research Recommendations Improve biological sampling of U.S. commercial landings and discards. Examine the effects of large tows on overall and age-specific abundance indices, specifically with reference to closed areas. Examine effects of abrupt changes in mean weights during the 1990s, specifically with respect to the 1989-1991 year classes in the eastern part of Georges Bank. Investigate factors associated with apparent recent improvements in survival ratios (R/SSB).

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Georges Bank Cod Issues in Assessment Data Used: ANALYTICAL, Age structured assessment ADAPT VPA Calibration of age 1-10+catch at age, 1978-1996 NEFSC spring and autumn RV indices (1978-1996) Canadian DFO spring RV indices (1986-1997) CAA estimated for recreational landings 1981-1996 Discard ratios estimated for 1989-1996 CAA: Commercial: sufficient age/length data not available prior to 1978 1994-1996 sampling poorest since 1982, notably in ''large" market category. 1996 "scrod" and "market" samples greater than 1995 samples Recreational: derived from very few length samples, 1981-1996 Sensitivity Runs: Recreational (1981-1996): slightly higher stock size, with similar [Text incomplete in source] and SSB as base run LPUE (1978-1996): lower stock size and higher F than final run Other issues: Transboundary stock: use Canadian CAA and RV survey   Canadian RV survey indices for 1993 and 1994 not used (lack of coverage) LPUE not used as in previous assessments (1994-1996 data unreliable) Discards not incorporated: lack of samples, 1978-1988 Recreational not used: poor sampling, lack of samples, 1978-198[Text incomplete in source] Georges Bank Cod Assessment Summary Current landings (1996) = 8,900; up from 7,900 mt in 1995 Survey indices fluctuate near record-low values LPUE declined by 1993 to the lowest LPUE in time series VPA results   Current F(1996) = 0.17 Current SSB(1997) = 46,400 t Shift to older ages in PR Mean F (4-8, u) declined from record-high in 1994 to record-low in 1996 Record-low recruitment of the 1994-1996 year classes Yield and SSB per Recruit Model   F0.1 = 0.17   Fmax = 0.32   F20% = 0.43 Projections   Short term: At status quo F, landings in 1998 (8,400 t) remain stable, SSB increases 35% during 1996 (41,200 t) to 1999 (55,000 t) Higher F scenarios initially increase landings and SSB, with subsequent declines   Medium term: 1998 to 2006 Landings increase from 8,200 mt to 29,400 mt SSB improves from 53,700 mt to 199,900 mt Median recruitment increases from 14 million to 34.4 million CONCLUSIONS   Stock remains in overexploited state with low biomass   Recruitment of three most recent year classes at record low   SSB remains near record low value   Current F(96) nearly equal to F0.1

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Georges Bank Cod Research Recommendations  Further investigate the effect of closed areas on the use of LPUE as an index of abundance, specifically examine the impact of change in fleet distribution as a result of progressive exclusion from the Canadian zone and then from Closed Area II. Further investigate the basis for deriving the recreational component of the cod catch. Specifically, the effect of sampling levels in the party and charter categories at age can be used to augment the commercial landings at age in the VPA. Further examine discard rates in years prior to 1989 before discard data can be incorporated into the catch at age. Gulf of Maine Cod Assessment Issues — I Data Used CURRENT ASSESSMENT ANALYTICAL (Age Structured) ADAPT VPA Calibration of Age 2-7+ CAA, 1982-1996   ANALYTICAL (Age Structured)   ADAPT VPA Calibration of Age 2-7+ CAA, 1982-1996 1996 landings were 7,200 t; up from 6,800 t in 1995 Sample summary   1994-1995 sampling improved over 1993, but low re: landings   1996 much improved Catch at Age   Reduction in proportion of older 9>7 yr) ages and few fish >9 yr after 1990   1992 year class 62% by number, 57% by weight in 1996 Commercial LPUE   LPUE declined in 1993 to pre-1989 level; not used in 1994-1996 Survey Indices   Low number and weight per tow persist through autumn 1996   Low recruitment indices in NEFSC and Massachusetts DMF surveys in 1995 and 1996   Survey Zx 1.1 in 1991-1993 and 1994-1996 VPA Calibration   Unusual F pattern in 1994 for fully recruited ages 4 and 5   Record low recruitment of 1994 and 1995 year classes <1 million fish

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Gulf of Maine Cod Assessment Issues — II Quality of CAA Commercial CAA Catch at Age Majority of catch at ages 3 and 4 (by number) and ages 4 and 5 (by weight) Reduction in proportion of older (>7 yr) ages and few fish > [Text incomplete in source] yr after 1990 1992 year class 62% by number, 57% by weight in 1996 High mean wts. at age in 1995 at ages 5 and 6 ==> Low Numbers may have influenced high F at age 4 and 5 in 1994 Sampling Intensity Poor sampling in 1993 1994-1995 sampling improved, but low for older ages (Large market category) Overall improvement in 1996 Recreational CAA Catch at Age Length composition indicates higher proportion of smaller fish compared to commercial catch Majority of catch at ages 2 and 3 (by number) and ages 3 and 4 (by weight) Note: Commercial age/length key used to distribute number at length to numbers at age Sampling Intensity Generally fewer than 1,000 (often <500) fish measured per year Length data (and age) samples pooled on annual basis Gulf of Maine Cod Assessment Issues—III Alternative Runs Six alternative assessment models using Stock Synthesis Approach (Fournier and Archibald, 1982) Employed same survey indices as ADAPT   Included commercial CAA alone and commercial and recreational CAA   Lognormal, multinomial, and robust error structure assumptions Lognormal model results Log-normal error structure most closely approximated ADAPT/VPA 1996 and 1997 Fs for fully recruited ages were estimated to be approximately 1.0 Recent recruitment (1994 and 1995 year classes) poorest ever in both analyses SSB declining sharply since 1989, remaining lowest ever through 1997 Multinomial model results Better fit to older ages and slightly lower Fs Lower Fs at older ages in earliest years Slightly lower Fs in recent years at all ages Slightly better recruitment of 1994 and 1995 year classes Marked increase in catchability by the fishery over time Robust likelihood results similar to multinomial, but with very high Fs at older ages since 1988 Conclusions All model formulations produce results similar to ADAPT/VPA: Sharp decrease in SSB since 1989 Poorest recruitment on record for 1994 and 1995 year classes F on fully recruited ages has remained at or above 1.0 since early 1980s

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Gulf of Maine Cod Assessment Issues — IV Sensitivity Runs Four Sensitivity Runs (including final) Two with commercial CAA alone Two including recreational CAA VPA results 1996 terminal F for fully recruited ages ranged from 0.96 to 1.04 (essentially 1.0) Recruitment estimates slightly higher when recreational CAA included Recent recruitment (1994 and 1995 year classes) poorest ever in all runs Retrospective patterns in recruitment not persistent SSB remains low in all runs Final VPA calibration used commercial CAA alone due to poor sampling of recreational CAA uncertain allocation of recreational cod catch between Gulf of Maine and Georges Bank Gulf of Maine Cod Assessment Summary  Current landings (1996) = 7,200 t LPUE declined sharply in 1992, remained low in 1993-1996 Survey Indices remain close to record-low levels in 1995-1996 VPA results current F(1996) = 1.04 current SSB(1996) = 9,200 t Yield and SSB per Recruit Model F0.1 = 0.16 Fmax = 0.29 F20% = 0.37 Projections At status quo F, SSB declines to unprecedented record low Landings decline in 1998 under all F scenarios SSB increases over the medium term at Fmax (0.29) to 13,000 t CONCLUSIONS The stock is overexploited, current F(1996) is well above Fmax and about 3X F20% Spawning stock biomass is at a record low level and is projected to decline further in 1998 and 1999 Gulf of Maine Cod Research Recommendations Further investigation of the changes in effort and LPUE in the VTR data set is required before LPUE can be used to calibrate VPA. Further investigation of the basis for deriving the recreational component of the cod catch, specifically the effect of sampling levels in the party and charter categories, is required before the recreational landings at age can be used to augment the commercial landings at age in the VPA. Further examination of discard rates in years prior to 1989 is required before discard data can be incorporated into the catch at age. SNE Yellowtail Flounder Assessment Issues Commercial Landings 1973-1996 Collect data for quarterly estimation Per capita sampling adequate 1973-1996 Commercial Discards 1973-1996 Need adequate sea sampling VTR discard ratios Survey Indices 1973-1996: Spring, Autumn, Scallop

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SNE Yellowtail Flounder Assessment Summary Fishing Mortality: F0.1=0.27, F96=0.12, below reference point in 1996 Spawning Stock Biomass: SSB-threshold=10,000 mt, SSB97=5,000 mt, below threshold, but increasing Short-term: stock improving, could reach 8,000 mt SSB by 1999 at F=0.12 Medium-term: stock should rebuild if fishing rate remains low SNE Yellowtail Flounder Research Recommendations Improve sea sampling coverage on trawl and scallop vessels. Increase sampling frequency on research surveys. Improve commercial length and age samples. Examine VTR data for mesh-specific discard ratios. Evaluate changes in maturity at age in recent years. Evaluate performance of the scallop survey as a tuning index. Evaluate winter survey as a tuning index. Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder Issues in the Assessment Data in the assessment: 1973-1996 U.S. and Canadian commercial landings and discards (recreational catch is negligible), U.S. spring and fall trawl survey indices, U.S. scallop survey indices, and Canadian trawl survey indices. Quality of Catch at Age: Age composition by quarter and statistical area not available 1994-1996. Catches characterized semiannually for the entire stock area. Sexually dimorphic growth not considered in estimates of catch at age. Sensitivity Runs: Log-transformed survey indices and removal of uncertain age-1 discard estimates. Results and diagnostics similar among all sensitivity runs. Alternative Methods: Biomass dynamics model (ASPIC) using total catch (1963-1996), U.S. spring and fall survey indices, and the Canadian survey index of biomass. Magnitude and temporal pattern of mean biomass and F similar to those from VPA. Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder Assessment Summary F and SSB Trends: F averaged 1.2 during 1973-1994 and decreased to 0.1 in 1996 SSB was 21,000 mt in 1973, declined to less than 4,000 mt during 1984-1988, fluctuated below 6,000 mt from 1989 to 1994, and increased to 11,700 mt in 1996 Probability Distributions for F and SSB in 1996: 80% chance that F was between 0.08 and 0.14, and nearly 0% probability that F exceeded F0.1 (0.25) 80% chance that SSB was between 9,800 and 14,600 mt, and 12% probability that SSB was below the rebuilding threshold of 10,000 mt Projections: At F0.1, landings and SSB will continue to increase in the next three years. At F96, landings will decrease slightly in 1997, then increase in 1998 and 1999, and SSB will continue to increase in the next three years. At F0.1, landings will increase to 8,400 mt in 2006, and SSB will increase to 46,200 mt in 2006. At F96, landings will increase to 5,500 mt in 2006, and SSB will increase to 71,600 mt in 2006.

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Georges Bank Yellowtail Flounder Research Recommendations Extending the VPA back to the 1960s should be explored. Changes in maturity should be closely monitored. The NEFSC winter survey should be modified to ensure coverage of Georges Bank. Evaluate the feasibility of sex identification in all field sampling to estimate catch at age and survey indices by sex. The number of ages in the VPA should be expanded.       STOCK LEVEL             LOW MEDIUM HIGH       OVER EXPLOITED REDUCE EXPLOITATION REBUILD STOCK REDUCE EXPLOITATION AGE DISTRIBUTION REDUCE EXPLOITATION, INCREASE YIELD PER RECRUIT   EXPLOITATION STATUS         FULLY EXPLOITED REDUCE EXPLOITATION, REBUILD STOCK LEVEL MAINTAIN EXPLOITATION RATE AND YIELD MAINTAIN EXPLOITATION RATE AND YIELD       UNDER EXPLOITED MAINTAIN LOW EXPLOITATION WHILE STOCK REBUILDS INCREASE EXPLOITATION SLOWLY INCREASE EXPLOITATION, REDUCE STOCK LEVEL    

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Stock Status Summary     Current Fishing Mortality 1994-1996 Recruitment 1994-1996 SSB Biomass Threshold Gulf of Maine Cod Well Above Target Low Low/ Declining Threshold Not Defined Georges Bank Cod Near Target Low Low/ Increasing Well Below Georges Bank Haddock Below Target Low Low/ Increasing Well Below Georges Bank Yellowtail Below Target Average Low/ Increasing Near SNE Yellowtail Below Target Low Low/ Increasing Below Sarc 24 Advisory Overview   The Situation for Georges Bay Cod, Haddock & Yellowtail, and SNE Yellowtail Has Improved; Gulf of Maine Cod is Unchanged   Except for GM Cod, F Has Been Reduced BELOW Overfishing Reference Points & is NEAR Rebuilding Fs   Except for GM Cod, Some Rebuilding of SSB has Occurred. GB Yellowtail is near SSB Threshold, but SSB for all Stocks is LOW relative to Historical Levels & BMSY   Recruitment in Recent Years Remains LOW Relative to Historic Levels   Short-Term Projections Indicate Maintenance or Modest Increases in SSB at Current Fs, Except for GM Cod   Strong Management Measures Are Warranted for GM Cod to Reduce the Risk of Stock Collapse   Continued Rebuilding of Four Stocks Will Be Jeopardized if Fishing Mortality Rates Are Allowed to Increase   Efforts to Reduce F for GM Cod Should NOT Come at the Expense of Other Heavily Exploited Stocks in the Gulf of Maine or Elsewhere

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Probability SSB = Threshold by 2004 Based on Two Sets of Projections   Threshold (kmt) Amendment 7 SARC 24 Georges Bank Cod 70 0.76 1.00 Georges Bank Haddock 80 0.27 0.43 Georges Bank Yellowtail 10 0.98 1.00 SNE Yellowtail   10   0.94   1.00