ACTIVE FISHING DAYS
The number of days in a reference period, such as a calendar month, during which fishing activities are "normal"; that is, different from zero, or not negligible.
A group of fish of the same age range in a population. The "0" group are the fish in their first year of life. Any fish born in April of a given year remains in the 0 group until April of the following year.
Hawaiian name for tuna, usually yellowfin.
A quantity of catch, effort or biomass attributed to a person, a vessel and a fishing company. The allocation can be absolute, as in number of tons, or a percentage of the annual allowable catch.
Often referred to as total allowable catch (TAC), it is the total amount of fish permitted by a management authority to be taken from a stock of a species or group of species by a fishery during a specified time period.
A share in a TAC usually divided amongst those with a right to participate in the fishery.
Sea fish which migrate to freshwater rivers, streams and lakes to spawn.
The farming of fish, mollusks, crustaceans and aquatic plants. Production is enhanced by regular stocking, feeding and by providing protection from predators. Aquaculture is the fastest growing sector of the fishing industry and the major hope for continued expansion of supplies to meet growing markets.
Traditional fisheries that utilize a relatively small amount of capital and energy. Artisanal fisheries generally operate small fishing vessels, if any, making short fishing trips close to shore.
A fleshy projection usually attached to the maxillary as in the barbels of a catfish.
Product covered in a mixture usually consisting of flour, milk and eggs. This is usually partly cooked ("pre-cooked") to set the batter before freezing. Batter serves the same purpose as breading.
Price for a product at the landing point not taking into account any transportation or handling costs.
A trawler in which the fishing gear is towed from outrigger booms, and tapered wooden beams are utilized to spread the mouth of the net. The beam trawl has been largely replaced by the otter trawl.
BIOMASS STANDING ROCK
The total weight of a group of fish, or of some defined fraction of it, in an area at a particular time.
Mollusks with two-component shells such as oysters and scallops.
Product is placed in a form or carton, topped up with water and frozen in a plate freezer. This technique is probably the one most often used for seafood. It gives good product protection, and because cartons are solidly filled, it makes transportation and storage easier with less chance of damaging cartons or contents. The product is protected because a relatively small surface area is exposed, and this is easy to cover with glaze.
A measure of fishing effort. For example, 10 vessels each fishing for 50 days would have expended 500 boat-days of effort.
BOTTOM OTTER TRAWL
Also known as dragging, this method of fishing is one of the most commonly used techniques for fish harvesting. Typically towed by a single boat, the horizontal opening of the net is achieved through the use of otter boards which are relatively heavy and equipped with a steel sole to provide good contact with the ground.
BOTTOM PAIR TRAWLS
A trawl towed by two boats at the same time. This method is typically reserved for very large nets but rarely used today.
Trawls that are specifically designed and rigged to work near the ocean floor.
A body of water with a salinity midway between seawater and freshwater.
Flour-based covering used to coat fish, shrimp and other seafood. The breading forms a jacket within which the product cooks gently. Breading helps to retain moisture in the product during cooking and also adds contrasting texture and flavor to the product.
Adult fish from which subsequent generations may be produced in captivity for growing as aquaculture or for release to the wild for stock enhancement.
A crab past the paper shell stage but not yet fully hardened. Unmarketable as a soft crab, it is also known as "papershell" and "buckler."
Fish taken incidentally in addition to the targeted species. Most may be returned to the sea as discards but are usually dead or dying.
Raising fish or other organisms in cages either on the ocean floor or suspended.
The sum of all activities utilized to harvest a given fish resource. It may refer to the location, target resource, technology used, social characteristics, purpose or season.
The shield covering the upper surface of part of the body of various crustacean species.
Cast from the shore or from a boat, this wide, cone-shaped net catches fish by falling and closing in on them. The perimeter is lined with weights and retained by a center line. Its use is typically relegated to shallow waters.
1.) The activity that results in taking fish out of its environment dead or alive. 2.) The total number or weight of fish caught by fishing operations.
Fillets wrapped together in cellophane or polyethylene film. Each wrap is usually labeled with the type of fish, the packer and the brand. Six polywraps per five-pound box is standard. Cellos may also be unlabeled (blanks) to permit tray packing and labeling by the retail seller.
A complete inventory of all elements of the observed population.
Animals (mollusks) with tentacles converging at the head around the mouth (e.g. squids, cuttlefish and octopus).
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. CITES is an international agreement between governments. Its aim is to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.
CLOSED SEASON OR SEASONAL CLOSURE
The banning of fishing activity, in an area or an entire fishery, for a few weeks or months, usually to protect juveniles or spawners.
Chowder base or bisque base which requires the addition of water or other dilutants before serving. Most frozen chowders sold are concentrates requiring approximately equal quantities of water, milk, cream or tomato juice to be added by the chef.
CONSERVATION OF NATURAL RESOURCES
The protection, improvement and use of natural resources according to principles that will assure their highest economic or social benefits for mankind and the environment now and into the future.
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN
For genetic resources, the country which possesses those genetic resources in the original conditions.
An animal that has 10 appendages such as crustaceans with five pairs of thoracic walking and grasping legs like prawns and lobsters. Squid are decapod mollusks, as they have 10 tentacles around their mouth.
Fish or shellfish which live in close relation to the bottom and depend on it for survival.
A stock that has been driven to very low levels of abundance compared to historical levels. Reproductive capacity has generally been reduced and will require active rebuilding strategies to recover.
The practice of cleansing bacteria from live shellfish to make them safe to eat.
To remove the sand vein (intestine) from the tail section of a shrimp, lobster or other crustacean.
A number of similar chemicals used in processing seafood to help retain moisture and sometimes to improve the appearance by whitening. Sodium tripolyphosphate, sodium or potassium pyrophosphate and other phosphate compounds are among the chemicals used. The use of these, or any other additives, should be listed on the label of each inner pack.
The weight of fish after it is gutted and usually scaled.
Drifting gillnets are deployed vertically either near the surface or in mid-water where fish will gill, entangle or enmesh. Gillnets have floats on the upper line and weights on the bottom to keep the net in an upright position. The United Nations established a worldwide moratorium on all high seas drift net fishing effective December 31, 1992. The ban is in force in all the world's oceans, enclosed seas, and semi-enclosed seas, but applies only to international waters, not to waters under national jurisdiction. Drift nets were designed for pelagic species like mackerel and salmon, and were typically utilized in deep water.
A longline kept near the surface, or at a certain depth, by means of regularly spaced floats and relatively long snoods with baited hooks evenly spaced on the mainline. The main advantage of longlining is the ability to fish a larger area with fewer people onboard.
See drifting gillnet.
Exclusive Economic Zone.
A major warming of the equatorial waters in the Pacific Ocean. The irregularity is accompanied by dramatic changes in species' abundance and distribution. El Niño events usually occur every three to seven years and are characterized by shifts in "normal" weather patterns.
Typically utilized in shallow water, the floatline remains at the surface. Deployed upright in the water column in a circular fashion, the fish gill or entangle themselves in the netting.
Fish remaining at the end of a given fishing season and reaching the spawning grounds. The term is generally used for anadromous fish management.An area, typically the river mouth, in which sea water is appreciably diluted by fresh water from rivers.
Fish from which the guts have been removed.
Activities that occur when a commercial fishing boat lands or unloads a catch. For example, the price received by a captain at the point of landing for the catch is an ex-vessel price.
A large trawler equipped to catch, gut, clean, freeze and store fish for market. They may also have the ability to process fish oil and fish meal.
Food and Agriculture Organization.
FARM GATE PRICE
In aquaculture, the price for a product at the production site, not taking account of any transportation or subsequent handling costs.
Fishery Conservation Zone. Zone of federal control of United States fisheries between territorial waters and a distance of 200 nautical miles as defined in the F-MA.
Edible material having nutrient value, typically residues from agriculture and food producing industries, as well as fish meal.
Slices of practically boneless fish flesh of irregular size and shape which are removed from the carcass by cuts made parallel to the backbone.
Mollusks such as clams, mussels, scallops and oysters. These shellfish pump water through their digestive systems and absorb the nutrients they need from the water.
The part of a stock that is available to be fished. The fish must be big enough to be caught and must live in places where fishermen work to be part of the fishable stock.
Controlling the catch of a species to maintain the resource and so, in the long run, provide more of that species.
Cooked, dried fish, ground for use as animal feed.
Also known as breath hold diving, this is a method of diving without the assistance of any breathing apparatus. The diver simply holds ones breath and submerges possibly using a snorkel, mask, flippers, weight belt and a wet suit. The method is sometimes used to collect fishery resources in shallow waters.
A large trawler equipped with a freezer aboard in order to preserve fish. The vessel is outfitted with a large refrigerated hold so it can reach the most distant waters.
The sum of the actual or potential genetic information and variation contained in the genes of living individual organisms, populations or species.
Earthy-/musty-smelling chemical compound affecting the taste and odor of water. Released by blue-green algae (cyanobacteria).
GILLNET OR ENTANGLING NET
Gillnets or entangling nets are strings of single, double or triple netting walls. They are deployed vertically, either near the surface, in mid-water or on the bottom, where fish will gill, entangle or enmesh. Gillnets have floats on the upper line and weights on the bottom to keep the net in an upright position. These nets may be deployed on the surface, in mid-water or near the ocean floor.
Protective coating of ice on frozen product to prevent the flesh from dehydration. Product frozen in blocks should have a glaze covering the block. IQF product needs glaze all over. This is usually achieved either by spraying frozen product with very cold water, which freezes instantly into a protective film, or by dipping the frozen item in a bath of ice-cold water for the same effect.
GLOBAL POSITIONING SYSTEM (GPS)
A system for finding three-dimensional coordinates on the earth using satellites.
A species or group of fish that live on or near the sea bottom, including cod, redfish, turbot and flounder.
The abbreviation for headed and gutted fish or headless, dressed fish.
The environment where an organism naturally occurs or the place one would go to find it.
HARPOON OR HARPOON GEAR
A pointed dart attached to a pole and tethered to a flotation device by several hundred feet of line. Today, the harpoon has become little more than a nostalgic method of landing fish.
Used to encircle or ring a school of fish, the haul net is typically operated from a small boat in shallow water. The ropes are short and the net is pulled in by hand.
HOOK AND LINE
Landing fish by hook and line has been in existence for centuries. The hook and line method is where the fish are attracted by either a natural or artificial bait placed on a hook fixed to the end of a line on which they get caught. This type of harvesting can be separated into four categories: hand lines, pole and lines, troll lines, and longlines or set lines.
INCIDENTAL CATCH OR BY-CATCH
Part of a catch of a fishing unit taken incidentally in addition to the target species towards which the fishing effort is directed. Some or all of it may be returned to the sea as discards, usually dead or dying.
INDIVIDUAL QUOTA (IQ)
A quota of a total allowable catch assigned to an individual, a vessel or a company.
Waters of the shallower part of the continental shelf.
Fillets packed in layers with a continuous sheet of polyethylene film between the layers. There is no significant difference between this, layer pack or shatterpack product.
Individually quick frozen. Each piece of product is separate from every other.
A method of fishing that utilizes a rod and reel in such a way, moved up and down, to present lures. Largely used to catch squid at night.
A cooperative operation between two or more companies, many times from different countries.
The weight of what is landed at a particular site, excluding discards.
Product, usually fillets, are put into a carton in layers with a sheet of polyethylene between each layer of product. This enables the fish to be separated easily while still frozen, so avoiding the waste of time and product involved in thawing blocks when less than the full block is required. Layer packs provide better product protection than IQF since less of the product is exposed to the air and the risk of dehydration is reduced. Layer packs are also easier to stack and handle in storage and transportation than IQF packs.
LIMITED ENTRY FISHERY
Fishery where the number of operators is restricted to control total landings. The system is managed by controls on the number and size of vessels and conditions relating to the transfer of fishing rights or the replacement of vessels.
See Hook and line.
The region where the sea meets the land. This shallow water area is typically occupied by rooted plants.
A fishing gear consisting of a main or ground line with regularly spaced, baited hooks attached. A drifting longline consists of a main line kept near the surface, or at a certain depth, by means of regularly spaced floats and relatively long snoods with baited hooks evenly spaced on the mainline. A set longline consists of a main line and snoods with baited hooks at regular intervals and which is set, in general, on or near the bottom.
The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act or MFCMA. An act designed to provide for the conservation and management of fisheries.
MARICULTURE MARINE FISH FARMING (AQUACULTURE)
The raising of marine finfish and shellfish for purposes of human consumption. Many times cultured in brackish or fresh water, the cultivation of the end product in sea water.
This gear digs mollusks out of the bottom by means of powerful underwater jets. The mollusks collected are sometimes transferred into the boat carrying the dredge by a conveyor-belt type device or by suction.
A heavy metal occurring naturally in some seafood. It tends to accumulate and so is higher in creatures such as tuna and swordfish which live a long time.
1,000 kilograms or about 2,204 pounds.
A trawl employed from the surface to great depth to target pelagic species depending on the position of the fish. Typically much larger than a bottom trawl, the trawl is a cone-shaped net with a wide mouth that tapers into a narrow end where the fish collect. The fishing depth is usually controlled by means of a net sounder and may be towed by one or two boats.
The death rate or the total number of deaths within a given population of fish. Death can arise from pollution, starvation and disease, but the two main sources of death are predation and fishing.
Any organization that is not part of a government. It usually refers to non-profit organizations or associations organized outside of institutionalized political structures.
OCEAN RUN OR SEA RUN
Any product packed as caught without grading for size.
Operated by a single vessel, it is by far the most important of all trawling techniques. The trawl uses two otter boards that are attached to the wings of the trawl by bridles. The otter boards, operated by the forces acting on them when the net is dragged, spread the mouth of the trawl horizontally while a combination of floats and weights maintain the vertical opening.
A stock is considered "overfished" when fishing mortality rates remain high enough to cause the population to decline to a point that the spawning stock is unable to reproduce those fish taken by the fishery.
Catching too many fish. The harvesting of a specific species of fish beyond a level that will allow the population to be replaced by reproduction.
Trawls operated by two vessels. Designed to tow very large nets either at the bottom or mid-water.
Heating product sufficiently to kill most bacteria but not enough to cook (or re-cook) the meat.
Fish that live either alone or in schools that spend most of their life swimming near the sea surface or in the water column with little contact with the bottom.
A row of small bones running horizontally along the mid-line of the sides of most fish from the nape for about one third the length of the fish.
Fish farming in which two or more compatible or symbiotic species of fish are grown together. It is also known as multiculture.
Product graded so that all pieces in a package are of specified weight or within a specified range of weights.
Animals that have changed from the larval form to the very first stages of juvenile or adult form.
A fishing vessel, ranging in size from small inshore boats up to larger factory trawlers, used to set pots for the capture of lobsters, crabs, crayfish and other similar shellfish species.
Traps in which fish and shellfish can enter voluntarily and will be hampered from escaping. They are designed in such a manner that the entrance itself becomes a non-return device, allowing the fish or shellfish to enter the trap but making it impossible to leave the catching chamber.
A very long net, typically anchored or strung between stakes, used to catch fish. Open at the surface, the trap consists of an arrangement of nets directing fish into an enclosure. In Japan, this group of gear is usually referred to as 'set-nets' (not to be confused with the fixed gillnets).
A geographically defined area set aside to achieve specific conservation objectives ranging from the preservation and protection of highly important natural and cultural features and for the regulation of the scientific, educational and recreational use.
Shrimp that is peeled but not deveined. Peeled-only shrimp.
PURSE SEINE OR SEINE NET
A seine is a very long net with or without a bag in the center. It can be set from either the shore or from a boat in an attempt to surround a certain area. Seines are normally used to catch schooling pelagic species such as mackerel, tuna, sardines, salmon, herring and menhaden. A wall of net is used to encircle a school of fish. The top is floated and the bottom weighted in order to keep the wall in an upright position. Essentially, the fishermen close off the bottom of the net in order to trap the fish in an inverted, umbrella-shaped enclosure.
The maximum number of fish that can be legally landed, either by country, vessel, company or individual fisherman, during a specified time period. Largely used to allocate total allowable catch, quotas can be used also to allocate fishing effort or biomass. Quotas may or may not be transferable, inheritable and tradable. This could also refer to the size of fish.
The influx of fish into the exploitable stock by either growth or migration into the fishing area.
A group of planktons which cause paralytic shellfish poisoning.
An underwater structure, typically comprised of rocks or coral, lying at or near the sea surface, that are the basis for rich communities of living things.
The weight of the whole fish before processing or removal of any part.
Raw fish and shellfish sliced thinly and eaten.
Small, clawed marine lobsters belonging to the family Nephropidae.
The only commercially important method in the United States, set nets are more commonly found in the inshore fisheries and put out along the seafloor to catch groundfish. They are deployed vertically where fish will gill, entangle or enmesh. Gillnets have floats on the upper line and weights on the bottom to keep the net in an upright position.
A set longline consists of a main line and snoods with baited hooks at regular intervals and which is set, in general, on or near the bottom. The main advantage of longlining is the ability to fish a larger area with fewer people onboard.
To separate fillets in a less-than-perfect layer pack, you may have to hurl the whole box at the concrete floor to break it apart. This explains the name. Some customers insist on shatterpacks, some on layerpacks. The two are the same for all practical purposes. There is also no significant difference between interleaved and layer pack products.
Shellfish include both mollusks, such as clams, and crustaceans, such as lobsters.
A juvenile salmon when it leaves its home river for the first time to enter the sea.
The spawn of an oyster or shellfish that commence life as free-swimming individuals then settle onto solid substrate.
The release of ova, fertilized or to be fertilized, as done by a number of aquatic species to reproduce.
A group of related organisms that share common characteristics and are able to breed together to produce fertile offspring.
A fishing vessel designed for the purpose of operating a trawl, a net that is dragged along the ocean floor or at a specified depth.
The process of collecting and analyzing biological and statistical information to determine the changes in the abundance of fishery stocks in response to fishing and, to the extent possible, to predict future trends of stock abundance. Stock assessments are based on resource surveys, knowledge of the habitat requirements, life history, and behavior of the species. Also used are environmental indices to determine impacts on stocks and catch statistics. Stock assessments are used as a basis to assess and specify the present and probable future condition of a fishery.
Originally a Japanese product made from minced fish flesh. Traditionally used on an enormous scale in Japan, it is also now the basis for an important seafood industry in the U.S. Most surimi is made from Pacific pollock, but many other fish can be used including cod, hake, whiting, croaker, barracuda, striped mullet and even cuttlefish.
Typically raw fish and shellfish thinly sliced and eaten. This is a Japanese word for a Japanese food ritual which has become enormously popular in the U.S. and has spread far beyond specialized restaurants with trained sushi chefs. Sushi includes some raw fish and a number of smoked and cooked products. Tuna and clams are normally served raw. Octopus is cooked. Other seafood is marinated. Although sushi is thought of as raw fish, many of the dishes in fact are not raw.
The number or weight of fish in a stock that can be harvested without compromising the stock biomass from year to year assuming that environmental conditions remain the same.
See total allowable catch.
Marking an individual or group of individuals in order to identify it when it will be recaptured. Tagging allows the study of growth, mortality and migration as well as the estimation of the stock size.
The most highly sought component of the catch targeted by the fishermen in a particular fishery. There may also be a secondary target species.
Turtle Excluder Device.
Waters in the region of higher, cooler latitudes rather than tropical latitudes. Literally, those between the Tropic of Cancer and the Arctic Circle in the Northern Hemisphere and the Tropic of Capricorn and the Antarctic Circle in the Southern Hemisphere.
A light Japanese-style batter becoming increasingly popular.
The lobster's fat; in effect, its liver. It is a greenish mass found in the head part of the lobster. It is tasty and nutritious, but usually discarded by consumers who are unaware of its value.
TOTAL ALLOWABLE CATCH (TAC)
The TAC is the total amount of fish permitted by a management authority to be taken from a stock of a species or group of species by a fishery during a specified time period, usually a year.
The process of transferring the catch from one fishing vessel to either another fishing vessel or to a vessel used solely for the movement of cargo to its final destination.
Fishing by use of stationary nets, barrages or pots in which fish and shellfish can enter voluntarily and will be hampered from escaping.
Trawling is the most important and one of the most efficient fishing methods in the world. It is also the primary method used to harvest bottomfish like cod, haddock and shrimp. The trawl is a cone-shaped net with a wide mouth that tapers into a narrow end where the fish collect.
A fishing method that utilizes natural or artificial baited hooks, trailed by a vessel near the surface or at a certain depth, to target tuna and tuna-like fish. Trolling adds motion to the bait or lure being used.
VESSEL CATCH LIMITS
A limit on the quantity each individual vessel can land per trip or period of time.
A bacteria naturally present in marine organisms which can cause illness, or even death, if ingested. The bacteria is most prevalent in clams, oysters and scallops. Those with liver disease are more susceptible to illness.
The fish spawned or hatched in a given year. For example, all fish born in 2000 would be age 1 in 2001, and age 2 in 2002.