Numbers of released fish in South Atlantic marine fisheries are increasing and improving information on these released fish is a priority research need. In this pilot project, citizen scientists are being recruited from the fishing community to provide information on released scamp grouper. Many fisheries use scientists to observe fish on the water, but that is expensive and impractical for small boat fisheries such as snapper grouper in the South Atlantic. This project addresses that challenge by enlisting the help of commercial and recreational offshore bottom fishermen to collect data on released scamp grouper via a free mobile app, SAFMC Release.
SAFMC Release is a mobile app developed by Harbor Light Software, with support of The Pew Charitable Trusts, Atlantic Coastal Cooperative Statistics Program with the Citizen Science Association serving as a fiscal sponsor. The app is a tool for fishermen to provide critical data on the fish they release, such as length, release depth, location, and the use of barotrauma reduction tools.
Better information on released fish could be useful to the upcoming scamp grouper stock assessment and future management.