Fish Aggregation Device (FAD) Enhancement of Offshore Fisheries in American Samoa
Fish Aggregation Devices (FAD's) have become an established part of efforts to enhance catches of offshore fishery resources throughout the Pacific region, even though there has been little scientific evidence which verifies that FAD's meet this objective. Support for FAD programs has usually been based on fishery catch reports providing only sporadic, qualitative, and circumstantial information. Federal funding for a FAD program in American Samoa began in 1979. Troll fishing test fishery analysis of FAD's in American Samoa began in 1980. In 1985, test fishery procedures were standardized to use quantitative troll fishing techniques. This enabled assessment of the effectiveness of FAD's in enhancing offshore fisheries through comparisons with offshore banks and open-water “control” areas. Analysis of test fishery CPUE's showcd a significant difference between open-water areas and offshore banks, but no significant difference between FAD's and offshore banks. Catches were always lower in openwater areas. There were significant differences between FAD's, and open-water and bank areas combined, for mean lengths of yellowfin tuna and skipjack tuna. The smaller sizes of yellowfin and skipjack tuna at FAD's are examined for possible size range bias in the test fishery catches.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 01 March 1989
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