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MESA: Rockfish

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Rockfish:
Pacific Ocean Perch
Northern Rockfish
Pelagic Shelf Rockfish
Rougheye Rockfish
Shortraker Rockfish
Other Slope Rockfish
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Rockfish Guide
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Twenty-three species of rockfish (Sebastes spp.) in the Gulf of Alaska are assessed each year by the MESA program. Information on the biology, distribution, stock structure, fishery, population dynamics, and management of each species is provided in five stock assessment fishery evaluation (SAFE) documents. These are produced annually for the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council (NPFMC).

Additionally, each year the MESA program staff participates in the Rockfish Working Group (RWG). Originally established by the AFSC in 1990, the RWG is an inter-divisional organization within the AFSC that prioritizes new research objectives for rockfish in Alaska. The RWG collaborates with other agencies and universities to conduct studies to reach these research goals.

Gulf of Alaska Rockfish species assessed by the MESA program include:

  • Pacific ocean perch (S. alutus)
  • Northern rockfish (S. polyspinis)
  • Pelagic shelf rockfish (includes dusky [S. variabilis], yellowtail [S. flavidus], and widow rockfish [S. entomelas])
  • Rougheye rockfish (S. aleutianus, S. melanostictus)
  • Shortraker (S. borealis) and other slope rockfish (includes sharpchin rockfish [S. zacentrus], redstripe rockfish [S. proriger], harlequin rockfish [S. variegatus], silvergray rockfish [S. brevispinis], redbanded rockfish [S. babcocki], yellowmouth rockfish [S. reedi], bocaccio [S. paucispinis], greenstriped rockfish [S. elongatus], darkblotched rockfish [S. crameri], pygmy rockfish [S. wilsoni], splitnose rockfish [S. diploproa], blackgill rockfish [S. melanostomus], chilipepper [S. goodei], stripetail rockfish [S. saxicola], vermilion rockfish [S. miniatus], and northern rockfish [S. polyspinis, eastern Gulf of Alaska only])

From left to right: Pacific ocean perch, Northern rockfish, and Dusky rockfish
From left to right: Pacific ocean perch, Northern rockfish, and Dusky rockfish.
 
Rougheye rockfish, Shortraker rockfish, and Silvergray rockfish
Rougheye rockfish, Shortraker rockfish, and Silvergray rockfish.
 
Redbanded rockfish, Yellowtail rockfish, Redstripe rockfish, and Sharpchin rockfish
Redbanded rockfish, Yellowtail rockfish, Redstripe rockfish, and Sharpchin rockfish.

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