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Where did the King Salmon go?

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Where did the King Salmon go?

Postby entropy1 » Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:22 pm

Please go to the following link and give it some thought.

The observer program was restructured and trawlers in the central and western gulf now fish with less than 30% of their trips observed. This allows them to "game" the system. Do a safe tow heading out the channel at 11pm, pick it up before midnight, have a cup of coffee and, after 12:01, am make a short tow back to town and drop the observer. Both water hauls but no bycatch. So you get credit for two observed days. Now go fish however you want for 6-12 days with no observer. This is an extreme example but it does occur. Trawlers fish safe when observed and behave totally different unobserved.

What puts the lie to this is that one smaller catcher processor had a special exemption in the previous observer program. The "Golden Fleece" used to have 30% observer coverage. But under the new program his exemption disappeared and he was forced to carry an observer 100% of the time. Guess what happened when he couldn't "game" the system? His king salmon bycatch increased by a factor of 8!

Now consider that the entire fleet of shorebased trawlers actually had their observer coverage DECREASED under the restructured program making it easier and less costly to game the system and hide the true bycatch numbers. And that they fish under a perverse incentive that rewards the worst bycatch offenders and punishes a trawler that takes time to avoid bycatch.

Additional confirmation of this "gaming" the system is found in the markedly decreased bycatch numbers of trawl vessels delivering to tenders, with no observers, vs trawlers delivering to shore plants with observers.

The same holds true for halibut and crab.

Anyway here's the link: ... ogram.html

The NPFMC refuses to even talk about this. So it's up to you.
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