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By GCN Staff

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Atlantic cod

NOAA partners with fisherman to save cod populations

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is partnering with local fisherman in Massachusetts to develop a tech-based solution for saving cod populations. But first they have to find the fish.

The scientists plan to locate mating and spawning clusters, once favorite targets for fishermen, and cordon them off as a way of protecting the species and allowing it to repopulate.  Using microphones on the sea floor and unmanned autonomous underwater vehicles, scientists are trying to get better information on the locations of spawning cod.

Local fishermen are contributing their knowledge about the “dynamics of fish populations and how patterns of distribution change in space and time,” said Bill Karp, director of science and research at NOAA’s Northeast Fisheries Science Center in Woods Hole, Mass. “That knowledge is extremely difficult for a scientist to obtain, so the opportunity to work with fishermen and learn from them is very advantageous.”

Using information gleaned from the microphones and unmanned underwater vehicles that transmit data each time they resurface, scientists hope to turn that information into verifiable, measurable ways to track and protect the cod.

Posted by Mark Pomerleau on Apr 03, 2015 at 8:21 AM


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