October 4, 2011
Fish stock assessment and data training course ends successfully

The second phase of a fish stock assessment and data training course, which started on September 19, 2011 in Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, came to an end on Friday, September 30.{{more}}

The course was successfully delivered in 2 phases by the regional fisheries organization, the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism Secretariat (CRFM), and the United Nations University-Fisheries Training Programme (UNU-FTP). The first phase was completed in Barbados, August 23-September 3, 2010.

Eleven CRFM Member States benefitted from the course, including Barbados, Belize, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, Trinidad & Tobago, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Turks and Caicos Islands. Representatives from the Caribbean Netherlands (Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba) also attended the course, as part of an effort to strengthen collaboration between these States and the CRFM.

The participants spent the last two weeks: learning how to store fisheries data in a database; exploring ways in which to retrieve the data and analyse them; obtaining a strong foundation in basic principles of statistics, sampling, and evaluating the status of fish populations/stocks as well as possible outcomes of different management strategies.

A global perspective was also provided by the lecturers, who have extensive fisheries science and management experience in Europe, Africa, and the Pacific.

The participants will return home with an improved capacity to evaluate the status of the fish populations/stocks at the national and regional levels. These skills are required to provide the managers and policy makers with the information needed for sustainable fisheries development, management and conservation.

Participants also had the opportunity to leave the classroom and observe daily operations at the Calliaqua fishing complex, which is one of the busiest fish landing sites in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. The field trip culminated with a sea-side reception, featuring local cuisine and a beautiful sunset.

A short closing ceremony was held on Friday, September 30, 2011, during which participants received certificates of completion.