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Resource Assessment and Conservation Engineering Division

The Resource Assessment and Conservation Engineering (RACE) Division comprises fishery and oceanography research scientists, geneticists, pathobiologists, technicians, IT Specialists, fishery equipment specialists, administrative support staff, and contract research associates. The core function of this diverse group is to conduct quantitative fishery surveys and related ecological and oceanographic research to measure and describe the distribution and abundance of commercially important fish and crab stocks in the eastern Bering Sea, Aleutian Islands, and Gulf of Alaska and to investigate ways to reduce bycatch, bycatch mortality and the effects of fishing on habitat   The status and trend information derived from both regular surveys and associated research are analyzed by Center stock assessment scientists and supplied to fishery management agencies and to the commercial fishing industry. RACE Division Programs include Fisheries Behavioral Ecology, Groundfish Assessment, Midwater Assessment and Conservation Engineering, Recruitment Processes, Shellfish Assessment, and Research Fishing Gear.  These RACE programs operate from three locations:

RACE Division
7600 Sand Point Way N.E.
Seattle, WA 98115
Phone: (206) 526-4171
Fax: (206) 526-6723
Kodiak Fisheries Research Center
AFSC Kodiak Laboratory
301 Research Court
Kodiak, AK 99615
Phone: (907) 481-1700
Fax: (907) 481-1701
Hatfield Marine Science Center
Fisheries Behavioral Ecology
2030 SE Marine Science Dr
Newport, OR 97365
Phone: (541) 867-0207
Fax: (541) 867-0136

The research surveys conducted from both NOAA and chartered ships utilize a range of traditional (e.g. bottom trawls) and advanced technology sampling techniques (e.g. acoustics), mensuration equipment, and other sampling systems. A large inventory of such gear is built and maintained by the Division's Survey Support and Research Fishing Gear Programs. RACE Division scientists also use underwater video and sonar systems  to observe fish and crab behavior during capture, and laboratory experiments to measure potential for animal survival after experiencing capture stress. Conservation engineering scientists also work with industry to test modifications of fishing equipment to reduce the take of - or impacts on - incidental species (bycatch), which may be out of season or not of commercial fishing interest and the effects of fishing on habitat.

Field Guide to Sharks, Skates, and Ratfish of Alaska by James Orr, Duane Stevenson, Gerald Hoff, and John McEachran (Texas A&M) receives first place for excellence in communication at the 2008 National Association of Government Communicators (NAGC) Blue Pencil publications competition. More >>

Recent Poster Presentations, Publications, Reports & Activities

  • SWINEY, K. M. 2008. Egg extrusion, embryo development, timing and duration of eclosion, and incubation period of primiparous and multiparous Tanner crabs (Chionoecetes bairdi). J. Crustacean Biol. 28:334-341. 
  • WITTEVEEN, B. H., R. J. FOY, K. M. WYNNE, and Y. TREMBLAY. 2008. Investigation of foraging habits and prey selection by humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) using acoustic tags and concurrent fish surveys. Mar. Mammal Sci. 24(3):516-534.  
  • Clarification of the Lycodes diapterus Species Complex (Zoarcidae), with Comments on the Subgenus Furcimanus
    Conference:  Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, Montreal, Quebec, July 2008
    (2008 poster, .pdf, 863KB)   Online.

  • Early Life History of Greenland Halibut (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides) in the Eastern Bering Sea Based on Recent Field Studies: Distribution, Development, and a Preliminary Look at Egg Buoyancy in February 2008
    Conference:  Larval Fish 32nd Annual Conference, Kiel, Germany, Aug 2008
    (2008 poster, .pdf, 1.46MB)   Online.

  • RACE Division Research Reports and Activities

See the poster and publications databases for additional listings.

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