Workshop on methods for assessing status and identifying benchmarks for conservation units of the Wild Salmon Policy, January 5-6, 2009, Vancouver, BC

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The purpose of the workshop was to provide a report on the progress of Wild Salmon Policy (WSP) Strategy 1 and solicit views on further development of methodologies for establishing Conservation Unit (CU) benchmarks. The methods for identifying Conservation Units were peer-reviewed and approved by PSARC in 2008.

The method presented in a working paper provides a toolkit of metrics and benchmarks of status, which will set the stage for future CU assessments. Specifically, a multi-criteria approach is provided that uses information on current abundances, trends in abundance over time, distribution of spawners, and fishing mortality relative to stock productivity.

Quantifiable metrics and candidate benchmarks draw from the scientific literature and previous management experience. The paper further evaluates a subset of those benchmarks on two performance metrics: the probability of extirpation over the long term and the probability of recovery to a target.

Workshop participants accepted the working paper with the revisions noted in these Porceedings. There was reasonable consensus on short term and long term next steps for setting benchmarks.