Fishery Management and Natural Resource Internship (DHA)

Website Biscayne National Park

In 2020, new fishing regulations were implemented under the FMP, creating new (more stringent) minimum size regulations for ten target species, as well as an aggregate bag limit for many species. With these new fishing regulations implemented in the park, it is critical that park managers monitor recreational fishing activity and compliance with the regulations. The intern will conduct interviews (aka creel surveys) of recreational fishers as they return to local marinas.  This work will be conducted three afternoons per week during high-use days (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday). The intern will engage fishers to ask them a few brief questions about their fishing experience followed by examination of their catch to identify and measure landings.  The purpose of these interviews is to collect biological data and, when relevant, provide education/outreach (e.g. provide them with the new regulations if their landings reveal non-compliance with regulations).  Throughout the internship, the intern will add all collected data to the park’s existing Creel Survey Database.  The intern will analyze the data collected to determine which species are most commonly landed, the percentage of legal landings (i.e., in compliance with the new regulations) for each of the ten target species, and the rate of fisher satisfaction. As skills and motivation allow, the intern can also look at longer-term trends using past years’ data available in the dataset.   All deliverables will be directly applied to the five-year review of the FMP to determine if the implemented regulations are achieving their intended goals to improve fishery resources.

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