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Resource Ecology and Ecosystem Modeling Program

Ecosystem Considerations for 2011

REEM staff completed the Ecosystem Considerations appendix to the stock assessment and fisheries evaluation (SAFE) report to the North Pacific Fishery Management Council (NPFMC). This year, the Ecosystem Considerations appendix includes both new and updated sections. The section describing ecosystem and management indicators includes updates to 41 individual contributions and presents 4 new contributions.

These include 1) Late Summer/Fall Abundances of Large Zooplankton in the Eastern Bering Sea, 2) Fall Condition of YOY Predicts Recruitment of Age-1 Walleye Pollock, 3) Juvenile Salmon Growth and Temperature Change as Predictors of Subsequent Recruitment of Groundfish in the Gulf of Alaska and the Bering Sea, and 4) Pribilof Islands Seabird Trends.

The ecosystem assessment section includes a new synthetic eastern Bering Sea (EBS) ecosystem assessment which was developed by a multidisciplinary team of experts during a series of workshops in September and October 2010. For more details about this assessment and the associated Report Card see the summary by Gaichas and Zador in this quarterly report.

New this year, the ecosystem assessment also includes a Hot Topics subsection which was designed to present a succinct overview of potential concerns for fishery management, including endangered species issues and early warnings of potential future fishery management interest. Endangered species information critical to fishery management presented this year include updates on short-tailed albatross bycatch and Steller sea lions in the eastern Bering Sea. Early warnings of potential future fishery management interest this year includes a summary of rare species observed in recent years in the eastern Bering Sea.

Findings from the Ecosystem Considerations appendix were presented to the NPFMC joint plan teams in September and November and to the NPFMC's Science and Statistical Committee in December. To see the appendix in its entirety see the AFSC website at

By Stephani Zador

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