Fishing Observations

This summer I have been working on quite a few projects with my grad student accomplice, Theo. They’ve all been based around Cape Falcon Marine Reserve, which will be implemented January 1st, 2016. It is the fifth, and last, and furthest north, marine reserve to go in along the Oregon coast. Most of the reserve is adjacent to Oswald West State Park, so that is where we do the majority of our research. Local community members and stakeholders were involved in deciding where they wanted the marine reserves to be placed. As the reserves mean no extractive purposes (i.e. fishing, shellfishing, etc.) or ocean development, fishermen wanted the marine reserves to be in places that would not significantly, negatively effect their fishing livelihoods. The Cape Falcon Marine Reserve is located in a portion of the ocean that is not heavily fished currently, however, there is still some fishing occurring within the future reserve (which is still completely legal as it does not become prohibited until January 1, 2016). To gather information on exactly how much fishing is occurring in this area, Theo and I have been conducting fishing pressure observation counts. We go to different locations along the coast to acquire the best views of the reserve in its entirety. At each viewpoint we count the number of buoys and boats we can see using binoculars, including any identification tips for the boats and buoys, such as name and color. Additionally, we record conditions of the environment such as sea conditions and weather conditions, as those will effect our abilities to accurately see all boats and buoys in the water. It’s amazing how you can see next to nothing without binoculars, and then you start using them and suddenly you can see dozens of buoys and a handful of boats! This project has been great practice for me at using binoculars and identifying boat types.


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One thought on “Fishing Observations

  1. Thanks for the insight into your work this summer, Haley. Looking forward to learning more at the symposium. Any tips for spotting with binocs that you’d care to share?

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