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ICES guidelines for estimating discard survival

Book Contribution - Chapter

The introduction of the Landing Oblogation, and its inclusion of HSE, has motivated stakeholders in several fisheries to begin research programmes, based on the guidance provided in this CRR, to investigate the survival potential of various components of the unwanted catch. This has increased our collective understanding of the stressors associated with the capture process, and, in turn, motivated efforts to mitigate these stressors to promote high discard survival and catch welfare in general.
To further promote development in this field WKMEDS recommends that future survival assessments should:
• be representative of the discarded catch and practices in commercial fishing, ideally at a metier scale;
• utilise one or more of three methods: vitality assessments, captive observation, and/or tagging observation;
• clearly define the state of death for the species of interest, preferably using multiple criteria pertinent to the chosen method;
• avoid biasing results through observation induced mortality, and, wherever possible, demonstrate this using appropriate controls;
• monitor the subject animals at a frequency and over a sufficient time period to describe any delayed mortality attributable to the catch-and-discarding process;
• incorporate careful design and analysis to ensure that the results are scientifically valid, while optimizing the use of resources and subject animals; and
• where practical, integrate two or more of the methods to estimate discard survival, to increase the scope of the investigation, as well as improve the accuracy, precision, and applicability of the estimates.
Book: ICES guidelines for estimating discard survival
Series: ICES Cooperative Research Reports
Volume: 351
Number of pages: 234