Published: December 2022
House Bill 1476 (2007) provides the funding for the Department of Fish and Wildlife to develop and implement rockfish research and stock assessment projects. During fiscal years 2021 and 2022 the Department’s Marine Fish Science Unit has used these funds to conduct surveys and biological studies to support federal and state stock assessment and management needs. Highlights of the work completed over the past two fiscal years include:
- the coastal rockfish rod-and-reel survey used to create indices of abundance for use in coastal rockfish stock assessments,
- the Puget Sound rocky habitat survey for ESA listed rockfish species needed to support NOAA recovery plans,
- the coastal Yelloweye Rockfish setline survey used for improved monitoring of abundance changes,
- the coastal Yelloweye Rockfish recreational fishery discard study used to improve fishery impact evaluation, and
- an on-line survey developed to evaluate the effectiveness of WDFW public education and outreach on rockfish identification. These highlights show the diversity of new work accomplished in fiscal years 2021 and 2022.
This report will provide descriptions for the activities mentioned above, other ongoing research, and new initiatives proposed for fiscal years 2023 and 2024.