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NOTICE TO PEI COMMERCIAL TUNA FISHERS

The PEI Fishermen’s Association and The Department
of Fisheries & Oceans are seeking participants to
assist in the 2018 Acoustic Tuna Tagging project.

The PEIFA will offer a compensation of $150.00 per day per vessel
for participation. An additional $100.00 will be given to the Captain
who successfully tags the tuna.

All tagging activities will proceed only under the guidance and
permission of the lead DFO scientist. A scientifi c permit will be
required and NO COMMERCIAL FISHING IS PERMITTED ON THE
SAME DAY AS A TAGGING TRIP.

There is a mandatory ½ day training workshop required which will
be provided by DFO in Charlottetown.

To submit your name please contact Melanie at the PEIFA offi ce: 902-
566-4050 ext. 3. Deadline to submit is Monday August 20th, 2018.
 
2018 TUNA ACOUSTIC TAGGING PROJECT FULL DETAILS:
• Suggested that 3 Captains/vessels per area would assist on the same day with up to two
days in each area. 3 areas (West, Central, East PEI). Thus $150/Captain/day.
• DFO also offers $100 per successfully TAGGED tuna.
• A total of 41 acoustic tags will be placed on tuna on PEI and Gulf NS through this project.
NOTE: 9 tags are allocated to commercial fishers for this project: 3 tags per area
• More details below on project objectives and conditions
• These motions stem from an original meeting in April with DFO Tuna Biologist Danielle
MacDonald and some members of the Tuna Advisory. Interest was expressed that
commercial fishers would like to be involved in some of the science projects including
the acoustic tagging.

MORE INFO ON TUNA ACOUSTIC TAGGING PROJECT:
Brief Summary of objectives and activities:
Designated vessels will capture, measure, DNA sample (fin clip) and tag (ICCAT dart tag, and acoustic
tag) Bluefin tuna to:

1. Provide an understanding of the short term mortality rates and behaviours of Bluefin tuna
caught and released from the hook and release fisheries (Tuna Hook and Release).
2. Continue to improve our understanding of the distribution and behaviour of Bluefin tuna
3. Determine the migration patterns of the fish sampled in order to provide realistic inputs for
stock movement models.

In order to achieve the objectives, Bluefin tuna will be captured by rod and reel and brought alongside
the vessel where an acoustic tag will be inserted into the dorsal musculature of the tuna. The dart is
attached to a tether which is attached to an acoustic tag. An ICCAT Floy tag will also be inserted near the same area. Tag numbers are to be recorded in the log books and on the data sheet provided by DFO Science Staff. Captains or crew will take and record a straight line fork length measure of the tuna while it is alongside the vessel (measuring tapes to be installed on the vessel). If possible, a tissue sample will be obtained from each tuna. This is to verify the origin of the fish. The sample will be in the form of a fin clip. Samples will be preserved in alcohol. DNA samples are to be transferred to the OIC at the end of the same fishing day whenever possible.
Once the fish has recovered (fish to be tethered and swum as required) it is released. If a fish is brought to the boat that is considered to be in poor physical condition it will be recovered to the degree possible and released with an ICCAT tag. Should a fish die as a result of being played, the resulting mortality will be submitted to the GBYP where it will be accounted for in their Research Mortality Allowance. The fish will be tagged with an ICCAT tag and released.
DFO staff will attempt to follow tagged tuna immediately upon their release using acoustic and sonar
gear on the DFO vessel or on the fishing vessel.

Some of the main conditions of project participation include:
• Only fishers who have taken the mandatory catch and release training course may participate in
this study.
• DFO Science will only work with fishers whose names are provided by the PEIFA (and are under
contract with the PEIFA for this study)
• Designated captains and vessels fishing under this permit are required to adhere to the
Modified 2018 License Conditions for the Hook and Release Bluefin Tuna Fishery (Appendix B of
permit)
• Only captains and registered crew (minimum of 3 including Captain) are to be onboard the
vessel when fishing under this permit- NO OTHER PERSONS SHALL BE ON BOARD (except DFO
personnel if needed)
• Participating fishers MUST work under the direction of the DFO officer in charge when fishing
under this permit and DFO Science staff must be in the area when fishing is undertaken under
this permit
• Captains must register dockside with DFO Science prior to leaving the wharf- A gear inspection
will be undertaken by DFO to ensure that the gear conditions of the permit (Annex B- Section 3)
are adhered to. DFO Science will provide names of vessels and crew to DFO C&P prior to leaving
the wharf.
• DFO Science has the right to refuse a vessel to fish and will advise the PEIFA and DFO C&P as
soon as possible
• Vessels are not permitted to commercial fish at the same time or on the same day as fishing
under this permit.
• Captured fish are to be tagged with 2 tags- an ICCAT scientific tag and an acoustic tag. Tags and
tagging gear will be supplied by DFO Science upon vessel registration dockside. Unused tags are
to be returned to DFO Science at the end of the fishing day
• Accurate records MUST be kept (sheets provided and an explanation given dockside) and turned
into DFO Science at the end of the day
• A DNA sample is to be taken from each tagged fish and stored in a pre-labelled vial. Methods
for taking DNA samples will be explained dockside. The sample is to be passed in at the end of
the fishing day
• TUNA are to remain in the water (alongside and/or tethered behind vessel) for the purposes of
all data collection, imaging and tagging done under this permit.
• If a fish cannot be tagged, circumstances must be recorded on BOTH the Catch & Release Bluefin
Tuna Fishery Daily Log Sheet in the comment section and on the Science Data Sheet provided by
the OIC. The OIC should be contacted by cell or radio as soon as possible to explain the
situation.
• DFO Science will provide compensation of $100 per tag deployed by a vessel crew to the captain
of the tagging vessel. Payments will be issued at the end of the tagging season by cheque from
the department- NO PAYMENTS WILL BE MADE DOCKSIDE.
• All activities under this permit must cease when directed by DFO Science- for example, if the
weather changes or DFO has equipment or vessel issues, the fleet will be directed to stop for the
day.
• DFO C&P may require vessels participating in this project to have an Electronic Monitoring
System installed on board their vessel.
• Gear Requirements: Rod and Reel Only. The minimum main line strength permitted on board
the vessel and affixed to all gear is 130 lb./59kg and the minimum leader strength is 180
lb./82kg. All hooks on board the vessel and used during tuna fishing activities shall be barbless
circle or other approved hooks.

 

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