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MESA: Stock Assessment

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Estimated biomass over time of six rockfish species
Estimated biomass over time of three major rockfish species

NOAA Fisheries is responsible for the management, conservation, and protection of living marine resources within the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone. The stock assessment section of MESA focuses on the primary responsibilities of NOAA Fisheries by producing Stock Assessment and Fishery Evaluation (SAFE) reports annually to support decision makers at the North Pacific Fishery Management Council (NPFMC).

In the MESA program, the primary stock assessment focus had been on sablefish and Gulf of Alaska (GOA) rockfish. However, gradually more species have come under the MESA umbrella, such as sharks, grenadier, and other species in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI).

In support of the stock assessments for these species, MESA staff conduct biological investigations on key life history parameters such as growth, maturity, and natural mortality. Another focus of research is considering early life history and environmental effects on recruitment processes to help explain the highly variable recruitment seen in some groundfish species.

Stock Assessment and Fishery Evaluation (SAFE) Reports

* Note- Rockfish SAFEs are produced as a full report every other year. An Executive Summary is produced for each group in the off years. The complete list of SAFE Reports can be found on the REFM Stock Assessment page.


Contact:
Jon Heifetz
Auke Bay Laboratories
Alaska Fisheries Science Center, NOAA Fisheries

Ted Stevens Marine Research Institute
17109 Pt Lena Loop Rd
Juneau AK 99801
Jon.Heifetz@noaa.gov


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