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Charlotte Amalie
Friday, May 27, 2022
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A Win-Win Situation

Dear Source:

Rick Niemeth’s research on the Hind Bank MCD is a perfect example of not only excellent state of the art science, but also how science can document the effects of fishery management actions. Over the course of his Hind Bank studies, the number of fish in the aggregation has increased over 10 times and the average size is nearly 4 inches bigger than when I did the original Nassau studies in the mid 70s.
Fishermen almost universally support the continued closure of the banks since weekly surveys at the markets show high catches of big fish that can only continue to increase as long as the protection remains.
Unfortunately, this is the only management action being monitored and, outside of some STFA documentation of Nassau catches, Rick’s work on the Grammanik Bank there is little being done to assess whether seasonal closures or other protections are having the desired effect.
Additionally, the Feds and the Council continue to "forget" that these actions are in place and continue to pile on additional restrictions without assessing the impacts of those already in place.
We have been trying to convince UVI that they should establish a Fisheries Institute to serve as a focus for research on these issues and to expand upon the work already going on at CMES. We understand that the UVI President supports the idea but there doesn’t seem to be any movement forward.
Come on!!! It’s a win-win situation. Let’s get going.
David A. Olsen, Ph.D.

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Dear Source:

Rick Niemeth's research on the Hind Bank MCD is a perfect example of not only excellent state of the art science, but also how science can document the effects of fishery management actions. Over the course of his Hind Bank studies, the number of fish in the aggregation has increased over 10 times and the average size is nearly 4 inches bigger than when I did the original Nassau studies in the mid 70s.
Fishermen almost universally support the continued closure of the banks since weekly surveys at the markets show high catches of big fish that can only continue to increase as long as the protection remains.
Unfortunately, this is the only management action being monitored and, outside of some STFA documentation of Nassau catches, Rick's work on the Grammanik Bank there is little being done to assess whether seasonal closures or other protections are having the desired effect.
Additionally, the Feds and the Council continue to "forget" that these actions are in place and continue to pile on additional restrictions without assessing the impacts of those already in place.
We have been trying to convince UVI that they should establish a Fisheries Institute to serve as a focus for research on these issues and to expand upon the work already going on at CMES. We understand that the UVI President supports the idea but there doesn't seem to be any movement forward.
Come on!!! It's a win-win situation. Let's get going.
David A. Olsen, Ph.D.