SITKA (AP) — Jamal Moss is one of the scores of scientists working on the most exhaustive studies to date on the fisheries of the Gulf of Alaska.
Moss, a principal investigator for the ongoing Gulf of Alaska Integrated Ecosystems Research Project, was in Sitka last week preparing for another study of Southeast fisheries. The multi-year project started with a pilot study in 2010 and focuses on the survival rates of blackcod, Pacific cod, rockfish, pollock and the arrowtooth flounder.
One of the goals of the project is to gather information so that fisheries managers can “begin to ask the right questions for what it is we’re seeking to monitor,” Moss said.
As an example, Moss pointed to a study of pollock in the Bering Sea. Prior to the study, Moss said, body size was thought to be the key indicator of winter survival for pollock, but after information was analyzed it was revealed that body fat was a better indicator in determining the survival rate of young fish.
“The area off the coast of the Southeast Alaska archipelago hasn’t been studied before,” Moss said.