GCFI76 – Nassau, New Providence, The Bahamas
Acerca de GCFI76
El GCFI se complace en anunciar que la 76ªva conferencia anual del Instituto de Pesquerias del Golfo y el Caribe (GCFI por sus siglas en inglés),) se llevará a cabo en en Nassau, Las Bahamas, del 6 al 10 de noviembre de 2023.
El GCFI se ha asociado con el Ministerio de Medio Ambiente de Las Bahamas para acoger la GCFI 76.
The theme of this year’s conference is “Linking science and society towards a vision for sustainable fisheries“.
Join us in Nassau, Bahamas, this November to exchange ideas and perspectives on emerging research and science with direct relevance to management and governance. The theme of this meeting highlights the importance of engagement and dialogue among diverse sectors to ensure a sustainable future of the region’s fisheries and marine resources. The marine environment continues to be threatened by impacts from overfishing, habitat loss and climate change, resulting in decreased biodiversity, increasing social inequality, and increasing food insecurity. These impacts present significant challenges now and into the future. During the meeting, we will discuss key topics for engaging in, and supporting, innovative approaches including ocean literacy, strengthening governance mechanisms, and developing inter- and transdisciplinary research.
As we look forward to a future of sustainable fisheries, it is necessary to examine options, paths, and barriers. Considering this, we are preparing a program comprised of an opening plenary, general sessions, workshops, and technical sessions related to sustainability, fish and aquatic ecosystems, fisheries and society, and innovations in fisheries. We will bring together experts, academics, policymakers, managers, fishers, and relevant organizations interested in marine issues, natural resources, sustainable fisheries, and tourism.
In keeping with the theme of the conference, submissions for oral and/or poster presentations on the following topics are encouraged:
- Innovative strategies that promote management and fishery conservation.
- Potential short-term and long-term impacts of climate change on fisheries and aquaculture sustainability including integrating knowledge on climate change into fisheries management and marine spatial plans (e.g., modelling and mapping tools, risk and vulnerability analyses, sea-use scenarios; ocean planning and management initiatives)
- Innovative strategies that support fishers and communities as they work to meet the sustainable fisheries goals.
- Social justice, equity, and fairness in marine fisheries and how these can be integrated into national and international fisheries management and science,
- Promoting research and training to build capacity and improve sustainability of local and regional fisheries.
- Integrating approaches to restore key species, communities, ecosystems, and ecological processes
- Aquaculture approaches to address food insecurity and depleted stocks
Atlantis Paradise Island, a lush, oceanside resort located on Paradise Island will serve as the main venue for GCFI76. A dynamic destination that launched over two decades ago as a first-of-its kind modern marvel of nature and engineering, Atlantis has embarked on a new chapter tied to a meaningful connection with the ocean, Bahamian culture and the spirit of the property’s over 7,500 employees. The resort’s new, immersive programming connects guests to the rich history, art, people, food and festivities of The Bahamas. Lynden Pindling International Airport (NAS) offers the closest terminals, which are located 13 miles southwest of the resort.
More details on the venue, transportation, travel and accommodations. will be added soon!
GCFI76 registration includes access to our conference app (Whova) all technical sessions, workshops, the Fisheries for Fishers forum, special thematic sessions, the poster session, the CINEFISH film festival, field trips, socials and other special events. Registration can be completed online at: https://www.gcfi.org/conference-registration/
The registration rates are as follows:
|GCFI Members||In Person
|Regular Early-Bird (through 30 September)||200||125|
|Student Early-Bird (through 30 September)||75||25|
|Regular Early-Bird (through 30 September)||300||200|
|Student Early-Bird (through 30 September)||125||75|
GCFI acknowledges that some of our members may not be able to afford virtual registration rates due to hardships experienced as a result of COVID-19. Please email [email protected] to submit a request for waiver of virtual registration fees.
Call for Abstracts
Abstracts for GCFI76 are due by May 31, 2023. Abstracts will be accepted in English, French, and Spanish. Abstracts are only required in one of the three languages; titles must be in all three languages. Abstracts must not exceed 250 words (275 for Spanish and French). Abstracts must be submitted online via the secure online Abstract Submission Form.
Acceptance to present within an oral or poster session requires submission of an extended abstract. Extended abstract preparation guidelines are available online. Members of GCFI are encouraged to submit full manuscripts or short communications based on presentations given at GCFI meetings to Gulf and Caribbean Research for peer review. Accepted manuscripts will be published open access at no charge to the authors through the GCFI-GCR partnership. Full manuscripts will also be accepted for publishing in the GCFI Proceedings.
Authors of accepted presentations will be notified via e-mail in July 2023. Submissions intended for the oral presentation, but not granted a slot, would automatically be accepted as a poster presentation. Regardless of the format, we encourage everyone who is interested in participating to submit an abstract.
Abstracts for GCFI76 are due by May 31, 2023.
The conference program features multi-disciplinary thematic sessions that have a mix of natural and social science, management, and technology related to the ecosystem or fisheries. Abstracts are solicited in the following areas (other subjects not listed will also be considered):
- Coastal and estuarine connectivity
- Governance, livelihoods, and organizations
- Reefs and associated ecosystems and fisheries
- Shallow and deep reef fishes
- Snapper and grouper fisheries
- Fish spawning aggregations
- Lionfish and other invasive species
- Artificial Reefs
- Marine protected areas science and management
- Pelagic ecosystem and recreational fisheries
- Continental shelf ecosystem fisheries
- Shrimp and demersal trawl fisheries
- Habitats and coastal management
- Climate change science and adaptation
- Sargassum science and management
- Communication and environmental education
- Marine litter science and management
- Queen conch, spiny lobster, oysters and other invertebrates
- Vision of the UN Ocean Decade
1.Research and stakeholder collaboration to inform and execute conservation and restoration
Organizers: Bonefish & Tarpon Trust
Session Description: Fisheries and habitat conservation in the modern world are faced with many challenges, including habitat loss/degradation, water quality declines, climate change impacts, and fishery capacity issues. These challenges are especially acute in nearshore areas, where anthropogenic impacts are most intense. Addressing these challenges requires a multidisciplined, collaborative effort from scientists, stakeholders, resource managers, and others on research, education, advocacy, and application of actionable knowledge to address conservation needs. Stakeholder engagement and collaboration in research is essential to conserve and restore ecosystems, associated biodiversity, and the fisheries that depend upon healthy ecosystems. Outdoor recreation specialists, such as commercial/artisanal fishermen, guides, and anglers, represent a stakeholder group that have unique incentives to contribute to conservation and stewardship. This session invites presentations and posters that highlight collaborative projects that address conservation challenges, and share successes, failures, and lessons learned. Areas of focus include fish habitat use, habitat conservation, habitat restoration, protected areas, education, user conflicts, collaborative fishery assessments, water quality.
Contact: For information please contact Aaron Adams ([email protected])
2. MPA networks as tools to implement ecosystems monitoring programs
Organizers: Regional Activity Centre for the Protocol Concerning Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife for the Wider Caribbean Region – SPAW RAC and the Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute.
Context: Monitoring is critical to know what is occurring on the ground and give regular, robust and strategic reporting to influence coastal management decision-making at regional, national and local levels. Such reports on the status of ecosystems can provide more reliable and accurate data and information to inform national /regional level policy, decision-making and reporting, and support the reporting by countries on their achievement of global objectives and targets e.g. Convention on Biodiversity, Global Biodiversity Framework, Ramsar Convention, Sustainable Development Goals, etc.). Monitoring programs also help to understand broader environmental trends and identify emerging issues impacting marine ecosystems.
At national, sub regional or regional scale, marine protected areas (MPA) manager networks build capacity and improve the effectiveness and sustainability of MPAs through sharing of experiences, best practices, knowledge and technical and scientific information. They allow for exchanges between managers and stakeholders with common issues in different local contexts and facilitate creative solutions, problem solving and resource sharing.
Given the existence of various national and regional monitoring programs and the role of regional marine protected areas networks in supporting such monitoring, this proposed GFCI special session represents an opportunity to identify opportunities for further collaboration and action.
Goal: To discuss and exchange ideas on how MPA managers networks can be used as a mechanism to develop, enhance and/or implement comprehensive ecosystems monitoring programs in the Wider Caribbean Region.
1. Tropical Ecosystems Monitoring Programs in the Caribbean – 1h30
The first part of the session will cover existing monitoring networks in the Caribbean with regard to the tropical ecosystems including coral reefs, mangroves and seagrass beds. Technical presentations will be made to showcase the existing initiatives in the region, their objectives, work done, actors involved, capacity-building, tools available and main results in terms of ecological trends of these ecosystems in the Caribbean. A strong focus will be made on the GCRMN-Caribbean network which ensures the collection of useful, comparable and accessible data that can effectively reveal the status and trends of the coral reefs in the region. This session will help contribute to efforts by the Cartagena Convention Secretariat to develop its second State of Marine Habitats Report and to report on various regional and global objectives and targets.
2. Caribbean MPA Networks working on monitoring practices – 1h30
The second sub-session will focus on existing marine protected areas networks in the wider Caribbean region, including the SPAW-listed protected areas network, MPA Connect, DCNA Network, Red Golfo, etc. Presentations will cover existing links and synergies between these networks of MPA with regards to ecosystem and biodiversity monitoring programmes, evaluation, contribution to conservation, knowledge sharing, etc. MPA Networks can be force multipliers to increase knowledge on the state of marine ecosystems. Information collected in MPAs are crucial in order to provide relevant indications on ecological trends inside and outside protected zones.
3. Opportunities of collaboration between MPA Networks, and regional monitoring programs – 1h00
The third part of the session will be dedicated to explore opportunities for collaboration between the MPA networks and regional monitoring programmes, identification of needs and ways to bridge the gaps.
Target Audience: Regional MPA managers, scientists, NGOs, government officials/decision-makers and regional/international organizations.
Contact: For information please contact Geraldine Conruyt: [email protected]
1) Developing Harvest Strategies Using FishPath & Using Adaptive Implementable Management to Achieve Human & Ecological Welfare Objectives
Sunday 5 November, 2023 | 8 am – 5 pm | Pre- Registration required
Organizers: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), The Nature Conservancy, and Gulf Caribbean Fisheries Institute
Conveners: Josh Nowlis (NOAA Fisheries) and Jason Cope (NOAA Fisheries) and Williams Michaels
Scope of workshop: Fisheries managers often feel that inadequate data prevent them from actively managing their fisheries. This perception can manifest itself in lack of clarity to move forward, feelings of hopelessness and management paralysis. Although many data-limited methods exist, they were previously scattered through the literature and not clearly linked to data collection schemes and management measures. FishPath is a decision-support tool developed by The Nature Conservancy, NOAA Fisheries, and CSIRO Australia to guide managers through the full range of data-limited options for fisheries management. It helps identify fisheries-specific options for effective data collection, assessment models and indicators, and systems of management response to stock status. FishPath provides an objective and transparent tool to develop robust harvest strategies regardless of data and management impediments in order to make the most of available data and other resources. It also provides pathways for adaptive management and strategic thinking. The GCFI workshop will provide an overview of this powerful new tool, including hands-on exercises so that participants can explore the potential to improve their sustainable fisheries management practices. Theme topics will include:
- Overview of the Management System
- Data collection
- Assessment methods
- Management methods
- FishPath Questionnaire
- Walk through specific example while encouraging attendees to follow along and answering questions with respect to their own fisheries.
- Review results from our example
- Review results from participants
- Demonstrate how to identify the most relevant options
- Highlight some common issues and opportunities:
- Size-based assessment methods
- Harvest control rules and addressing uncertainty
- Compliance and enforcement
Registration: Workshop registration and invitation will be limited to 40 participants, and must be completed via this link before August 30th.
Contacts: For more information please contact Josh.Nowlis ([email protected]) or Jason Cope ([email protected])
2) Interactions between human activities and marine megafauna of the Caribbean: progress made through the CAMAC project and potential for future actions
Organizers: The Agoa Sanctuary and the SPAW-RAC
Conveners: Magali Combes, Claire Pusineri, Lucas Genève, Célie Nazical, , Amandine Escarguel, Géraldine Conruyt
Scope of workshop: The habitats of most species of marine megafauna (sharks, sea turtles, marine mammals and seabirds) strongly overlap with human activities such as fishing, shipping and tourism. These frequent interactions can lead to negative impacts on these vulnerable species, as well as socio-economic issues for the human coastal communities. In the Caribbean, these impacts remain poorly quantified and mitigated.
The regional cooperation project CAMAC, for Caribbean marine Megafauna and anthropogenic Activities, aims to improve knowledge and strengthen regional collaboration and stakeholder capacities around these issues. CAMAC will ultimately provide Caribbean governing bodies and environmental stakeholders with recommendations and tools to reduce the negative impacts resulting from the interactions between marine megafauna and human activities. The CAMAC project will address these objectives through four thematic work packages:
- Interactions with fisheries: assessment of socio-economic and environmental issues in collaboration with Caribbean fisheries organizations.
- Stranding networks: harmonization of protocols and capacity building.
- Awareness raising strengthening of environmental education skills and creation of a school twinning program.
- Knowledge enhancement: development of a scientific framework for regional megafauna assessment and enrichment of knowledge of poorly known areas or species through surveys.
The project is planned for 5 years (2023-2028) and is structured in 2 phases:
- Phase 1 has already started and will end in December 2023. It focuses on the review of available information and data, on the development of partnership with regional stakeholders and on the determination of the protocols and needs for phase 2.
- Phase 2 is expected to be confirmed in 2023 and should take place from 2024 to 2028. It will be dedicated to the implementation of the protocols determined during phase 1, in collaboration with identified partners.
Objective: This workshop aims to bring together the CAMAC partners and other Caribbean stakeholders working on fisheries, megafauna conservation, and environmental education, to discuss and validate the major outputs of CAMAC phase 1. These outputs (review of available information, partnership building and identification of protocols and needs for phase 2) will first be presented and the attendees will then split into 4 thematic round tables to discuss and validate the protocols for phase 2.
Expected outcomes of workshop
- To communicate on the project, how it could benefit the Caribbean territories/organizations, and how they can get involved.
- Strengthen networking with and between CAMAC partners.
- Make sure the protocols for phase 2 meet their needs.
- Encourage other organizations to become involved in the project.
- Scientists, MPA managers and stakeholders working on megafauna conservation (sharks, sea turtles, marine mammals and seabirds);
- Scientists, managers, and practitioners working on fisheries and marine traffic.
- Stakeholders in environmental education and sensitization.
- Local authorities and governing bodies of the Caribbean.
- Any GCFI attendee willing to contribute to the project will be welcome, but we will open the workshop in priority to organizations and individuals who have expressed an interest in the CAMAC project during Phase 1.
Registration Deadline: Registration should be completed via this link before August 15, 2023.
Contact: For more information please contact Magali Combes, CAMAC project manager ([email protected])
Outstanding Student Achievement Award
GCFI is awarding $1,500 scholarships to the best oral and poster presentations (both virtual and in-person presentations are eligible). The content of the presentation must be related to final research done by the student related to their thesis or dissertation. If already submitted, this thesis or dissertation must be no older than one year. A manuscript of the oral/poster presentation must be submitted to be eligible for this award. The award winners will receive their scholarship at the following year’s conference, to help support their participation in this meeting. Complete instructions and eligibility requirements are on the Outstanding Student Achievement Awards web page.
GCFI Travel Awards
GCFI will offer two travel awards of US$750 each to eligible students to help offset travel costs to GCFI76. The deadline for students to apply for this award is May 31, 2023. Complete instructions and eligibility requirements are on the GCFI Student Travel Awards web page. Students will be notified of acceptance/rejection of their application by July, 2023. Students may apply for a travel award and for consideration for the Student Achievement Award in the same year. Students who received the GCFI75 Student Achievement Award are not eligible for a travel award.
Ron Schmied Scholarship
The Ron Schmied Scholarship, a GCFI initiative supported by the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) and private individuals, will be offered to a qualified graduate student in support of their travel to GCFI76. The Scholarship is in the amount of US$1,500, and graduate students with an interest in social, economic, biological, ecological, or management perspectives on recreational fisheries are eligible to apply. The deadline for students to apply for this award is May 31, 2023. Students will be notified of acceptance/rejection of their application by July 2023. Note that a manuscript of the oral/poster presentation must be submitted to be eligible for this award. Complete instructions and eligibility requirements for the Ron Schmied Scholarship are on the Ron Schmied Scholarship page. Students may apply for the Scholarship and for consideration for the Student Achievement Award in the same year. Students may also ask to be considered for the Ron Schmied Scholarship and a GCFI Travel Award in the same year but will only receive one award.
SCRFA Travel Award
The Science and Conservation of Fish Aggregations Association (SCRFA) will offer a Student Travel Award of US$800 to a student in the Caribbean Region to attend GCFI 76, Nassau, Bahamas. Originally formed in 2000 and known as the Society for the Conservation of Reef Fish Aggregations with the mission of promoting responsible stewardship of fish aggregations, in particular, reef fish spawning aggregations, the Society modified its name in 2012 to reflect its focus on science and the inclusion of all aggregating fish species. The SCRFA Student Travel Award is to encourage and help students to work in this important area and showcase their ideas and work at GCFI.
Applications should be submitted by 31 May 2023 at which time abstracts and all supporting paperwork must be submitted. Applications and further information enquiries are to be sent to Martin Russell (SCRFA Chair/CEO) or, visit: www.SCRFA.org
Gladding Memorial Award
As a component of the Fisheries for Fishers (F4F) Initiative, the GCFI Gladding Memorial Award (GMA) committee is requesting nominations of outstanding fishers for GCFI76. This annual award is presented to select fishers (male or females) who demonstrate, as Peter Gladding did, significant commitment to the sustainable use and long-term conservation of marine resources in the Gulf and Caribbean region. 2024 will represent the 20th year anniversary of the first award. The winner will be sponsored to attend GCFI76 in Nassau, The Bahamas to receive his or her award, and to participate in the entire conference including the Fisheries for Fishers Forum and Fishers field trip.
You are invited to submit award nominations to the GMA committee at [email protected]. All nominations must be received by 15 August 2023 and nominators are welcome to request further information and guidance. Background information on the GMA, nomination forms with award criteria, and details of the process are available on the Gladding Memorial Award webpage.
CINEFISH Film Festival
Are you interested in submitting a short film for this year’s CINEFISH film festival at the GCFI conference? If so, please submit the following information via this form: https://forms.gle/ZGWjJLWXEdyQFYGx6. The submission deadline is July 31, 2023 and films should be submitted in mp4 format prior to the conference.
- Title of film
- Brief description of film (2-3 sentences)
- Film makers(s)
- Duration of film – Note: films should be a maximum of 15 minutes
- Image for film (png or jpg) – To be used for promotion
- Link to preview the film (YouTube, Vimeo, GoogleDrive etc)
- Type of film (Documentary, Animation or New Media)
- Abstract Submission: July 1, 2023. Click here to submit
- Student Awards: July 1, 2023. Click here for more information
- Gladding Memorial Award: August 15, 2023: Click here for more information
- CINEFISH: August 15, 2023: Click here to submit
- Early Bird Registration: September 30, 2023: Click here to register