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Old 02-28-2006, 09:52 AM
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Default ASFMC - Addendum for collecting American Eel data

The following is a news release issued by the Atlantic States Marine
Fisheries Commission:

ASMFC American Eel Board Approves Addendum I
Addendum Aims to Improve Data Collection

The Commission's American Eel Management Board approved Addendum I to
the Interstate Fishery Management Plan for American Eel. The Addendum
establishes a mandatory trip-level catch and effort monitoring program
for American eel in order to collect much needed data on this species.
The Addendum provides states the option to collect the data through
either a commercial eel harvester permit and mandatory reporting system
or an eel dealer permit and reporting system.

The Addendum responds to concerns regarding the lack of accurate catch
and effort data and the critical need for these data for stock
assessment purposes. This need was identified in the recent Commission
benchmark stock assessment for American eel and in the peer review panel
report. The external Peer Review Panel recommended the completion of
additional
analyses prior to adoption of the American Eel Stock Assessment for
technical and management purposes.

Insufficient data prevented the American Eel Technical Committee from
developing reference points or quantifying stock status. Because of
this, the status of the stock is uncertain. The Technical Committee has
concerns that relative abundance will continue to decline unless
mortality decreases and/or recruitment increases. The peer review panel
concurs that eel abundance was likely much higher in the late 1970s to
mid-1980s. The panel report states that the abundance of yellow eel has
declined in the last two decades and the stock is at or near low levels.


Copies of the Addendum, Stock Assessment Report and Terms of Reference
& Advisory Report will be available by March 1 via the Commission's
website at www.asmfc.org under Breaking News or by contacting the
Commission at (202) 289-6400. For more information, please contact Lydia
Munger, Fisheries Management Plan Coordinator, at (202) 289-6400 or
[email protected].

*************************
Tina Berger
Public Affairs Specialist
Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission
1444 I Street. NW, Sixth Floor
Washington, DC 20005
Phone: (202)289-6400
FAX: (202)289-6051
Email: [email protected]
www.asmfc.org

ASMFC Vision: Healthy, self-sustaining populations of all Atlantic
coast fish species or successful restoration well in progress by the
year 2015.
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