18 months in, and we have made significant progress in data sampling and establishing relationships, receiving substantial media interest as we do so.
Brown Shrimp sampling
Two fishermen regularly supply us with samples of brown shrimp every week. We use these samples to assess the species’ distribution according to their size, weight, and sex as well as health status. Our initial results suggest that the shrimp are infected with Black Spot disease to the same extent that they were in 2000.
Meanwhile, enthusiastic fishermen are helping us collect data on bycatch. While fishers actively avoid catching rare species by using specially designed sieve nets, our participatory data collection had proven that rare species, listed on the IUCN Red List, can still be found within the Wadden Sea, namely: goldsinny wrasse, river lamprey, cliff perch, sea trout, twiate shad, salmon and sea bass.
We have also decided to revise sampling procedures to simplify GAP2 duties onboard vessels. For example, we have decided to count the species caught only if the total catch is very low – otherwise we use data of presence/absence base. Such changes will esnure that sampling is even easier for more fishermen in the future.
We have also carried out a number of meetings, in conjunction with fieldwork. It seems much easier to discuss our cooperative work onboard during data collection (or immediately afterwards) because questions arising onboard are often more significant, while the answers can be given more quickly.
Over the past 18 months, we have received unexpected media interest. Amongst the outcomes are:
- Three TV productions about the project, including one for the German Foreign Office which will be broadcast in the Middle East!
- Two radio interviews (Nord West Radio and Jade Radio).