Advances in fishing technologies have increased the efficiency and diversification of recreational fisheries. This poses challenges for surveying specialised or ‘hard-to-reach’ recreational fishers (e.g. sport fishers) that may take the majority of the recreational catch for some species, but are too rare within the general population to be sampled cost-effectively using existing methods. We trialled two new methods—time-location sampling (TLS) and online diaries—for surveying specialised recreational longtail tuna (Thunnus tonggol) fishers. Results were compared with a concurrent traditional access point survey (APS). Online diaries were inexpensive but unsuitable for collecting representative data due to avidity, volunteerism, and differential recruitment bias. APS yielded high resolution data on catch, effort and size composition but was expensive and ineffective for sampling all components of the fishery. In contrast, TLS conducted at fishing tackle stores was cost-effective for accessing the breadth of fisher types due to the need for all fishers to purchase or to inspect fishing-related products at some point. Given the frequent absence of complete list frames for recreational fisheries, we suggest undertaking multiple TLS surveys to collect catch rate data and to simultaneously estimate population size using capture-recapture approaches in order to estimate the total recreational catch of species of interest.
Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 28, 2012
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