The Bureau of Marine Fisheries monitors the abundance and distribution of fish and other marine animals in New Jersey's coastal waters with a trawl survey program. Samples are collected from 1800 square miles of Atlantic Ocean between Sandy Hook, NJ and Cape Henlopen, Delaware, with five surveys conducted during the year (January, April, June, August and October). Volunteers from the Division's Wildlife Conservation Corps play a vital role in the program by working side-by-side with state biologists aboard a research vessel and gain a unique experience for themselves.
Data compiled over the years shows the ups and downs of fish populations and is used to help manage our marine fisheries resources. The need for or the success of management actions, such as seasonal fishing restrictions, minimum sizes, and catch limits, can often be identified by results from the trawl survey. The survey also helps measure attainment of the Division's goals of restoring and maintaining healthy, plentiful, stocks of saltwater fish for New Jersey recreational anglers, commercial fishermen and seafood lovers.
Ocean Stock Assessment Fish Trawl ((DEP YouTube Channel))