Fisheries observers, and increasingly electronic monitoring programs, are the ‘eyes and ears’ of the fisheries management system on board fishing vessels.
Fisheries observer and EM systems play an essential role in validating fisher reported information, as well as collecting independent scientific and compliance information important to effective management. Fisheries observers can also play an important role in sampling and tagging, delivering critical information on fish biology and population dynamics, as well as acting as an important liaison between managers and industry.
MRAG companies are leading independent providers of observer services internationally. The scope of our programs has ranged from small, localised programs, involving a handful of vessels, to programs involving 80+ vessels operating across multiple countries and undertaking close to 20,000 observer sea days per year.
MRAG offers a complete ‘end-to-end’ observer service including observer recruitment and training, development of observer manuals and data collection forms/apps, supply of scientific and safety equipment, travel and accommodation logistics, database design and management, briefing/debriefing, insurance, program administration and payments, and data analysis and reporting. We’ve also worked closely with clients to provide tailored observer services for particular needs (e.g. scientific experiments). In addition to our considerable program management capability, MRAG also has extensive experience working with clients to provide advice and support on particular aspects of their observer programs including program management standards development, observer safety and cost recovery.