Protected Species Assessment Workshop

Novel methods for abundance and trends assessment and data poor bycatch estimation for protected species

NOAA Fisheries has a long tradition of holding Assessment Workshops focused on fish stock assessment.  In early 2017, there was a Protected Species Assessment Workshop (PSAW). Protected Species refers to marine mammals, sea turtles, and protected fishes, seabirds, and corals. The workshop was held at the Alaska Fisheries Science Center, 7600 Sand Point Way NE, Building 4, Seattle, Washington 98115.

Assessments represent the core science products used to inform protected species management decisions. Significant advances in assessment are being made by each NOAA Fisheries Science Center, and the overarching goal of the PSAW was to share information in small sessions in order to improve our collective ability to adapt and adopt new approaches. Abstracts were sought that addressed the following two themes:

  1. Use of novel methods to assess abundance and trends. New technologies (e.g. unmanned systems, paired EO/IR imaging systems, telemetry) and new analytic approaches (Bayesian approaches, state-space modeling, non-parametric time series analysis, spatial models, etc.) are being used to collect the information needed for assessment reports. Subgroups may be identified depending on abstract submissions. (1.5 days; may separate into sub-groups depending on abstract submissions)
  2. Novel Methods to deal with poor data quality in bycatch estimation. Assessments require estimates of bycatch. In many cases, quantitative estimates of bycatch are quite poor for some or all of the various sources of bycatch. This workshop will give participants an opportunity to hear about advances being made in various Centers to address the issue of poor data quality and understand whether new methods might be applied to local bycatch estimation problems. (0.5 days)

The Proceedings of the First National Protected Species Assessment Workshop are available here.

Stay tuned for details about another Protected Species Assessment Workshop in 2019.

2017 Steering Committee: If you have questions, please contact Laura Ferguson ( or your local Steering Committee member:

  • Laura Ferguson, Lead coordinator, Office of Science and Technology
  • Sean Hayes, Northeast Fisheries Science Center (Co-Chair)
  • Erin Oleson, Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center (Co-Chair)
  • Jeanette Davis, Office of Science and Technology
  • Robyn Angliss, Alaska Fisheries Science Center
  • Jim Carretta, Southwest Fisheries Science Center
  • Eli Holmes, Northwest Fisheries Science Center
  • Eric Ward, Northwest Fisheries Science Center
  • John Kocik, Northeast Fisheries Science Center
  • Keith Mullin, Southeast Fisheries Science Center
  • Mridula Srinivasan, Office of Science and Technology
  • Stephen K. Brown, Office of Science and Technology

Science Communication and Coordination


Science Connect

Protected Species Toolbox

Protected Species Assessment Workshop