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The commercial groundfish integration program: catch monitoring

The catch monitoring component of the Commercial Groundfish Integration Program (CGIP) provides DFO with accurate information on harvesting practices, catch composition, and location of fishing. This information is essential to assess the status of fish stocks and ensure the conservation and long-term sustainability of fish resources. The monitoring component of the program consists of two parts: 100% At Sea Monitoring and the Dockside Monitoring Program (DMP).

100% At Sea Monitoring is accomplished through two methods:

An at-sea observer is onboard to verify and record the catch by species (retained and released). The observer completes an observer log (ASOP) which is the official at-sea catch record. This method is primarily used in the groundfish trawl fishery.

An electronic monitoring system (EM) is used onboard which captures sensor data and video footage. The system consists of multiple cameras and sensory devices. A GPS receiver measures vessel speed, location, and behaviour. A hydraulic pressure transducer, and drum rotation sensor monitor the use of fishing gear.

The Dockside Monitoring Program is used to further verify retained fish. Harvesters offload their catch at a designated port in the presence of a dockside validator who identifies the species harvested and counts each piece of fish and also derives a weight estimate.

The following processes take place for every fishing trip:

If the harvester logbook passes the audit of 10% of the logbook material, a Groundfish Quota Status Report (QSR) is developed using the logbook as the official catch report. The QSR is then sent to the skipper.

If the harvester logbook does not meet standards or is not found to represent actual catch, the audit is forwarded to Groundfish Management Unit. This may result in full review of the video footage at the skipper's expense.

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