MRIP is a collection of regional surveys, all working together to produce recreational fisheries statistics. Some of these surveys are conducted by state natural resource agencies, such as the surveys in Alaska, Louisiana, and Texas; and some are conducted through the Fisheries Information Networks, or FINS, with funding support from NOAA Fisheries. Regardless of who is conducting the surveys, they all play a part in providing recreational fishing data necessary to maintain the health of the Nation’s fisheries. 

On the Atlantic (ME-East FL) and Gulf coasts (LA-West FL), the Access Point Angler Intercept Survey (APAIS) and Coastal Household Telephone Survey (CHTS) collect recreational catch rate and effort data, respectively. These two surveys are also implemented in Puerto Rico and Hawaii. In the South Atlantic and Gulf sub-regions (NC- LA), party boat catch rate data are collected through a separate survey (Southeast Region Headbost Survey), therefore estimates for these sub-regions only include charter boats in the for-hire sector. 

The For-Hire Survey was developed to resolve undercoverage of charter and party boat angler effort by the Coastal Household Telephone Survey (CHTS) on the Atlantic and Gulf coasts. The Southeast Region Headboat Survey samples and monitors the recreational headboat fishery in the south Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, and the Large Pelagics Survey samples anglers and boat captains who fish for large pelagics/Highly Migratory Species along the Atlantic coast. 

With a few exceptions (e.g. North Carolina) the Access Point Angler Intercept Survey and the Coastal Household Telephone Survey do not collect data during Jan/Feb (wave 1) on the Atlantic coast north of Florida. The surveys are also not conduced in Maine or New Hampshire during Nov/Dec (wave 6).

Marine recreational fishing in Texas, Alaska, and along the Pacific Coast (as part of the Pacific Coast Recreational Fisheries Information Network (RecFIN) in California, Washington and Oregon) is monitored by state natural resource agencies. West Pacific U.S. territories are not currently included in the national survey program, but pilot studies have and are being conducted to develop appropriate survey methods.

For more details about the changes in MRIP coverage, please see Program Evolution.