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The impact of COVID-19 on freshwater fisheries fieldwork and data collection

October 1, 2021

COVID-19 has affected almost every aspect of society including freshwater fisheries fieldwork. Our study quantified the effects of the pandemic on fisheries fieldwork in the United States. We administered a survey to fisheries chiefs in all 50 states to assess the pandemic’s impact on fisheries fieldwork. Of the 37 participants, 91% reported the pandemic affected their fieldwork and 92% adapted their sampling methods in response to the pandemic. Common adaptation strategies included using Personal Protective Equipment (PPE; 100%), practicing social distancing (97%), using smaller crews (82%), and developing contingency plans (51%). Based on the survey results, we identified potential challenges to adaptations and offered strategies to improve them. Strategies we identified include adopting novel data collection techniques, finding new positions for temporary employees, and publicly sharing contingency plans. Ultimately, this paper offers novel guidance on how fisheries professionals can best move forward with fieldwork during a time of crisis.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2021
Title The impact of COVID-19 on freshwater fisheries fieldwork and data collection
DOI 10.1002/fsh.10636
Authors E. E Tracy, Chad N. Teal, Steven J. Ingram, Christopher J. Jenney, Joshua D. Grant, Scott A. Bonar
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Fisheries Magazine
Index ID 70229470
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Coop Res Unit Seattle

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