Poster by Melissa Stevens, The Nature Conservancy
eCatch is a tool developed by The Nature Conservancy that provides a simple way for fishermen to collect, map and share their fishing information. It evolved from The Conservancy’s work in Morro Bay, California. In that project we quickly realized that one of the most difficult aspects of fisheries management is the collection of good data, particularly location data, in a manner that would allow for in-season adaptive management. We built eCatch to address this problem.
Knowing where fishing by-catch events occur is one way to avoid problems in the future. We designed eCatch to give captains an easy way to capture the location of OFS events, visualize them on web-based maps, and share with other members of their local community if they want to. eCatch can show spatial patterns of by-catch that are not apparent to any individual. This experience has shaped our primary objective for eCatch, which is to create a simple way to access, visualize and share spatial fishing information.