Joseph Lee Manager • about 5 years ago
Problem Statement 15-7: "An app that turns fishers, divers, swimmers and pilots into Amateur Ichthyologist"
Background on Sustainable Fishing Issue
Data is central for the understanding and management of marine resources. Compared to large-scale commercial fisheries, data for small-scale and artisanal fisheries are often very sparse, if collected at all. The lack of data for these small-scale fisheries translates into increased uncertainty in the methods used to establish management targets. Improving the current data streams available to managers (either individuals or communities) or even providing additional data streams would help to reduce uncertainty about the status of the resource. In particular, data from visual sightings of the resource, provided that confounding variables such as wind or weather conditions are accounted for, can be used to track trends in resource abundance. The ubiquity of modern technology, provided the right tools are in place, provides great opportunity for collection of visual data that may not otherwise be recorded, and ultimately enhance the understanding and therefore management of marine resources.
The public does not carry pencils and data sheets with them when they move about, nor should they with today’s technology. The majority, however, do carry around smartphones. We would like to have an app for a mobile device that allows the user to: 1) take pictures of a resource they see; 2) name the picture as either an estimate of school size, if the resource is schooling, an estimate of length, if for an individual, or the species name; 3) automatically record GPS location as well as the date and time; 4) automatically record basic weather conditions such as weather patterns (e.g. clear, cloudy), and wind speed; and 5) have this information uploaded to a retrievable location. Our specific application is to allow spotter pilots around Oahu who assist small-scale fishermen to easily record estimates of school sizes they spot along with geographical and environmental information.
National Marine Fisheries Service, Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center
1845 Wasp Blvd, Bldg. 176, Honolulu, Hawaii, 96818
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