Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting, 36709-36710 [2021-14785]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices will be restricted to those issues specifically identified in this notice and any issues arising after publication of this notice that require emergency action under Section 305(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, provided the public has been notified of the Council’s intent to take final action to address the emergency. Special Accommodations The meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Kathy Collins at the Council Office, (302) 526–5253, at least 5 days prior to the meeting date. Dated: July 7, 2021. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2021–14783 Filed 7–12–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XB224] Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. AGENCY: Notice for request of proposals for Ageing Study on Gulf of Mexico Gray Triggerfish. ACTION: The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is requesting proposals from qualified contractors to organize and conduct an Expanded Sampling and Ageing Study on Gulf of Mexico Gray Triggerfish. SUMMARY: This will be a 24-month project and a maximum $250,000 is available to fund the work. Proposal Submission Deadline: August 13, 2021. DATES: Council address: Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, 4701 W Spruce Street, Suite 200, Tampa, FL 33607; telephone: (813) 348– 1630. jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES ADDRESSES: Dr. John Froeschke, Deputy Director, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; john.froeschke@gulfcouncil.org; telephone: (813) 348–1630. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 Proposal Submission Deadline Friday, August 13, 2021 The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) seeks a highly-qualified contractor to organize and conduct an ageing study on Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) gray triggerfish, Balistes capriscus. The Term of Contract is 24 months and Maximum Funding Available for Work is $250,000. The contractor is tasked with evaluating and proposing new techniques to efficiently sample, process, and utilize different ageing structures (i.e., spines and otoliths) for gray triggerfish in the Gulf. Proposal applicants are encouraged to develop work plans to collaborate with state and federal partners to collect representative samples across a range of age classes. Typically, the various Gulf state and federal creel and port samplers would be able to contribute to this work; however, otoliths are not currently taken at dockside intercepts under current sample collection protocols. Sampling gray triggerfish otoliths that are small, fragile, and difficult to extract may require obtaining filleted carcasses (i.e., racks) from fishery-dependent intercepts. If additional samples are necessary, the proposal may consider an effective method for field collection of gray triggerfish otoliths and dorsal spines. Gray triggerfish have historically been aged by counting translucent zones in the first dorsal spine since gray triggerfish otoliths are small, fragile, and difficult to extract. During the Data/ Assessment workshop deliberations for SEDAR 62, it was noted that a study applying bomb radiocarbon validation to compare spine and otolith ages routinely resulted in lower age estimates from spines versus otoliths, and called into question the reliability of growth estimates derived from spine-based ages (Patterson et al. 2019: SEDAR62–WP– 17). Background During its January 2021 meeting, the Council identified unspent Council funds in 2020. These unspent funds were primarily due to limited travel during the COVID–19 pandemic. The Council is considering funding a research study, on the ageing of gray triggerfish, that could be completed, available, and contributory to the scheduled SEDAR Research Track assessment of Gulf gray triggerfish to begin in 2024. The last assessment for Gulf gray triggerfish (SEDAR 62) was terminated because of irreconcilable data issues, with ageing of gray triggerfish being an outstanding concern. PO 00000 Frm 00012 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 36709 Gray triggerfish have historically been aged by counting translucent zones in the first dorsal spines since gray triggerfish otoliths tend to be small, fragile, and difficult to extract. Allman et al. (2016) conducted an age validation study of gray triggerfish spines that revealed two peaks in translucent zone formation, which was interpreted as a doublet pattern (two closely spaced translucent zones) representing a single year in the life. However, during workshop deliberations for SEDAR 62, it was noted that a study applying bomb radiocarbon validation to compare spine and otolith ages resulted in otolith ages better aligning with known regional coral and otolith carbon-14 values compared to spines, which under-aged known records. Whereas, the comparison of vertebra versus otolithderived ages indicated a close agreement (Patterson et al. 2019: SEDAR62–WP–17). Shervette et al. (2021), conducted a study on gray triggerfish in Ghana and U.S. South Atlantic that compared ageing of spines and otoliths. They also developed a methodology for removing the otoliths from gray triggerfish. Whole otoliths were submerged in water and read against a black background with magnified stereoscope, and then each opaque zone was counted. Spines were also read and fish were aged by counting the number of translucent zones in the spine section. Two independent readers with ageing experience of 8 years +, read the otoliths and spines. This study found age estimates for spines ranged from 1 to 8 years and for otoliths 3 to 13 years. An age bias plot indicating a potential ageing bias starting at age-3 between spines and otoliths of gray triggerfish. Therefore, the Council is interested in funding an age study for Gulf gray triggerfish to reconcile ageing differences in hard parts. The Council also seeks expert advice from funded work to determine whether it is possible to develop an algorithm to convert spine-based ages to the more accurate otolith-based ages for Gulf gray triggerfish. Scope of Work The contractor will be responsible for all data products outlined below and is encouraged to contribute additional products and suggestions in the proposal for this work. The selected contractor is also responsible for a midterm project summary report and a presentation of the final results to the Scientific and Statistical Committees and the Council. The proposed scope of work should include the following: E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES 36710 Federal Register / Vol. 86, No. 131 / Tuesday, July 13, 2021 / Notices • Evaluating and proposing new techniques to efficiently sample, process, and utilize different ageing structures (i.e., spines and otoliths) for gray triggerfish in the Gulf. • Clearly define how representative gray triggerfish samples will be obtained from various fleets (i.e., private recreational, for-hire, and commercial) and/or fishery-independent survey samples with the goal of constructing age-length keys from otolith-based ages. The proposal should include the methodology of the age validation work proposed with a clear rationale for that work, such as literature cited and the anticipated sample sizes of fish by age class (0–14 years). • Typically, the various Gulf state and federal creel and port samplers would be able to contribute to this work; however, otoliths are not currently taken at dockside intercepts under current sample collection protocols. Thus, proposal applicants are encouraged to develop work plans to collaborate with state and federal partners to collect representative samples across a range of age classes. • The proposal should include detailed methodology for extracting and processing otoliths and spines and a clear rationale for that scope, and the anticipated sample sizes of fish by age class. • Compare gray triggerfish ages from otoliths and spines to determine whether it is possible to develop an algorithm to convert spine-based ages to the more accurate otolith-based ages. Describe the variance about these estimates for the conversion algorithm as appropriate. • Proposals should provide information and rationale for the consideration of seasonal growth increment pattern validation. Results and outcomes from this work will be provided to the Council and National Marine Fisheries Southeast Fisheries Science Center (SEFSC). summary of the applicant’s qualifications. Proposed Scope of Work: See bulleted list above. Qualifications of Applicant: A summary of the qualifications of the applicant and other team members, if applicable. A curriculum vitae should be included for each individual who is expected to work on the project. Proposed Budget: A detailed budget, including the basis for the charges (e.g., hourly rates, fixed fees, approved federally negotiated overhead rate and other costs consistent with federally allowable costs for sub-contractors). Proposed Timeline: A detailed timeline of field and laboratory collections, processing of samples, data analysis, and mid-term and final reports should be provided. Letters of Support: Letters demonstrating collaboration with state and federal partners and fishermen to obtain adequate samples across age classes are highly encouraged. Applicant References: Names, titles, full addresses, email addresses, and phone numbers for three clients for whom the applicant has provided similar services to those requested or are familiar with the applicant’s work and the quality of the applicant’s work products. Application Process Contractor Qualifications: The successful applicant or applicant team will have demonstrable experience in marine ecology. How to Apply: Applicants should submit a proposal to Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council by email (rfp.graytriggerfish@gulfcouncil.org) by 11:59 p.m. on August 13, 2021. Additional information including funding specifications can be obtained through inquiry to this email address. Proposals should include the following elements: Executive Summary: A summary of the work proposed, including a brief Disclaimer 1. This project is being funded by federal funding authorized under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act through NOAA Fisheries Service and the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council NOAA award number NA20NMF4410011. Compliance with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Pub. L. 104–208 as amended), the current requirements of the Federal Office of Management and Budget, the Department of Commerce financial assistance standard terms and conditions, the National Oceanic and VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:47 Jul 12, 2021 Jkt 253001 Proposal Evaluation Criteria and Next Steps Proposals will be evaluated based on methodology and scope outlined in the proposed work plan. An ability to deliver, in a timely manner, a quality work product as determined by qualifications including prior experience, references, budget, and timelines is paramount. The Council may request additional information as deemed necessary or negotiate modifications prior to providing support for a proposal. Once a proposal is selected for funding, a formal contract will be provided to the applicants. PO 00000 Frm 00013 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Atmospheric financial assistance administrative terms, all special award conditions specific to this award and all parts of the Uniform Guidance at Title 2 of the Code of Federal Regulations must be maintained. 2. The contractor is responsible for all costs conducting the work and presenting the final results to the Scientific and Statistical Committees and Council. 3. Proposals and their accompanying documentation will not be returned, but retained as part of the Councils administrative documents. 4. All applicants included in the proposal must disclose any conflicts of interest and/or pending civil/criminal/ fishery legal actions. 5. The Council reserves the right to accept or reject any or all applications received, negotiate with all qualified applicants, cancel or modify this request for proposals in part or in its entirety, or change the application guidelines, when it is in the best interests of the Council. Dated: July 7, 2021. Tracey L. Thompson, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2021–14785 Filed 7–12–21; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XB211] New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice of public meeting. AGENCY: The New England Fishery Management Council’s is convening its Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) via webinar to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Recommendations from this group will be brought to the full Council for formal consideration and action, if appropriate. DATES: This webinar will be held on Thursday, July 29, 2021, beginning at 9 a.m. Webinar registration information: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/ register/2564282533496027919. Call in information: +1 (415) 930–5321, Access Code: 971–717–154. ADDRESSES: Council address: New England Fishery Management Council, SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\13JYN1.SGM 13JYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 131 (Tuesday, July 13, 2021)]
[Notices]
[Pages 36709-36710]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-14785]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[RTID 0648-XB224]


Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting

AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

ACTION: Notice for request of proposals for Ageing Study on Gulf of 
Mexico Gray Triggerfish.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council is requesting 
proposals from qualified contractors to organize and conduct an 
Expanded Sampling and Ageing Study on Gulf of Mexico Gray Triggerfish.

DATES: This will be a 24-month project and a maximum $250,000 is 
available to fund the work. Proposal Submission Deadline: August 13, 
2021.

ADDRESSES: Council address: Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, 
4701 W Spruce Street, Suite 200, Tampa, FL 33607; telephone: (813) 348-
1630.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dr. John Froeschke, Deputy Director, 
Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; 
[email protected]; telephone: (813) 348-1630.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Proposal Submission Deadline Friday, August 13, 2021

    The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council (Council) seeks a 
highly-qualified contractor to organize and conduct an ageing study on 
Gulf of Mexico (Gulf) gray triggerfish, Balistes capriscus. The Term of 
Contract is 24 months and Maximum Funding Available for Work is 
$250,000. The contractor is tasked with evaluating and proposing new 
techniques to efficiently sample, process, and utilize different ageing 
structures (i.e., spines and otoliths) for gray triggerfish in the 
Gulf. Proposal applicants are encouraged to develop work plans to 
collaborate with state and federal partners to collect representative 
samples across a range of age classes. Typically, the various Gulf 
state and federal creel and port samplers would be able to contribute 
to this work; however, otoliths are not currently taken at dockside 
intercepts under current sample collection protocols. Sampling gray 
triggerfish otoliths that are small, fragile, and difficult to extract 
may require obtaining filleted carcasses (i.e., racks) from fishery-
dependent intercepts. If additional samples are necessary, the proposal 
may consider an effective method for field collection of gray 
triggerfish otoliths and dorsal spines.
    Gray triggerfish have historically been aged by counting 
translucent zones in the first dorsal spine since gray triggerfish 
otoliths are small, fragile, and difficult to extract. During the Data/
Assessment workshop deliberations for SEDAR 62, it was noted that a 
study applying bomb radiocarbon validation to compare spine and otolith 
ages routinely resulted in lower age estimates from spines versus 
otoliths, and called into question the reliability of growth estimates 
derived from spine-based ages (Patterson et al. 2019: SEDAR62-WP-17).

Background

    During its January 2021 meeting, the Council identified unspent 
Council funds in 2020. These unspent funds were primarily due to 
limited travel during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Council is considering 
funding a research study, on the ageing of gray triggerfish, that could 
be completed, available, and contributory to the scheduled SEDAR 
Research Track assessment of Gulf gray triggerfish to begin in 2024. 
The last assessment for Gulf gray triggerfish (SEDAR 62) was terminated 
because of irreconcilable data issues, with ageing of gray triggerfish 
being an outstanding concern.
    Gray triggerfish have historically been aged by counting 
translucent zones in the first dorsal spines since gray triggerfish 
otoliths tend to be small, fragile, and difficult to extract. Allman et 
al. (2016) conducted an age validation study of gray triggerfish spines 
that revealed two peaks in translucent zone formation, which was 
interpreted as a doublet pattern (two closely spaced translucent zones) 
representing a single year in the life. However, during workshop 
deliberations for SEDAR 62, it was noted that a study applying bomb 
radiocarbon validation to compare spine and otolith ages resulted in 
otolith ages better aligning with known regional coral and otolith 
carbon-14 values compared to spines, which under-aged known records. 
Whereas, the comparison of vertebra versus otolith-derived ages 
indicated a close agreement (Patterson et al. 2019: SEDAR62-WP-17).
    Shervette et al. (2021), conducted a study on gray triggerfish in 
Ghana and U.S. South Atlantic that compared ageing of spines and 
otoliths. They also developed a methodology for removing the otoliths 
from gray triggerfish. Whole otoliths were submerged in water and read 
against a black background with magnified stereoscope, and then each 
opaque zone was counted. Spines were also read and fish were aged by 
counting the number of translucent zones in the spine section. Two 
independent readers with ageing experience of 8 years \+\, read the 
otoliths and spines. This study found age estimates for spines ranged 
from 1 to 8 years and for otoliths 3 to 13 years. An age bias plot 
indicating a potential ageing bias starting at age-3 between spines and 
otoliths of gray triggerfish. Therefore, the Council is interested in 
funding an age study for Gulf gray triggerfish to reconcile ageing 
differences in hard parts. The Council also seeks expert advice from 
funded work to determine whether it is possible to develop an algorithm 
to convert spine-based ages to the more accurate otolith-based ages for 
Gulf gray triggerfish.

Scope of Work

    The contractor will be responsible for all data products outlined 
below and is encouraged to contribute additional products and 
suggestions in the proposal for this work. The selected contractor is 
also responsible for a mid-term project summary report and a 
presentation of the final results to the Scientific and Statistical 
Committees and the Council. The proposed scope of work should include 
the following:

[[Page 36710]]

     Evaluating and proposing new techniques to efficiently 
sample, process, and utilize different ageing structures (i.e., spines 
and otoliths) for gray triggerfish in the Gulf.
     Clearly define how representative gray triggerfish samples 
will be obtained from various fleets (i.e., private recreational, for-
hire, and commercial) and/or fishery-independent survey samples with 
the goal of constructing age-length keys from otolith-based ages. The 
proposal should include the methodology of the age validation work 
proposed with a clear rationale for that work, such as literature cited 
and the anticipated sample sizes of fish by age class (0-14 years).
     Typically, the various Gulf state and federal creel and 
port samplers would be able to contribute to this work; however, 
otoliths are not currently taken at dockside intercepts under current 
sample collection protocols. Thus, proposal applicants are encouraged 
to develop work plans to collaborate with state and federal partners to 
collect representative samples across a range of age classes.
     The proposal should include detailed methodology for 
extracting and processing otoliths and spines and a clear rationale for 
that scope, and the anticipated sample sizes of fish by age class.
     Compare gray triggerfish ages from otoliths and spines to 
determine whether it is possible to develop an algorithm to convert 
spine-based ages to the more accurate otolith-based ages. Describe the 
variance about these estimates for the conversion algorithm as 
appropriate.
     Proposals should provide information and rationale for the 
consideration of seasonal growth increment pattern validation.
    Results and outcomes from this work will be provided to the Council 
and National Marine Fisheries Southeast Fisheries Science Center 
(SEFSC).

Application Process

    Contractor Qualifications: The successful applicant or applicant 
team will have demonstrable experience in marine ecology.
    How to Apply: Applicants should submit a proposal to Gulf of Mexico 
Fishery Management Council by email 
([email protected]) by 11:59 p.m. on August 13, 2021. 
Additional information including funding specifications can be obtained 
through inquiry to this email address. Proposals should include the 
following elements:
    Executive Summary: A summary of the work proposed, including a 
brief summary of the applicant's qualifications.
    Proposed Scope of Work: See bulleted list above.
    Qualifications of Applicant: A summary of the qualifications of the 
applicant and other team members, if applicable. A curriculum vitae 
should be included for each individual who is expected to work on the 
project.
    Proposed Budget: A detailed budget, including the basis for the 
charges (e.g., hourly rates, fixed fees, approved federally negotiated 
overhead rate and other costs consistent with federally allowable costs 
for sub-contractors).
    Proposed Timeline: A detailed timeline of field and laboratory 
collections, processing of samples, data analysis, and mid-term and 
final reports should be provided.
    Letters of Support: Letters demonstrating collaboration with state 
and federal partners and fishermen to obtain adequate samples across 
age classes are highly encouraged.
    Applicant References: Names, titles, full addresses, email 
addresses, and phone numbers for three clients for whom the applicant 
has provided similar services to those requested or are familiar with 
the applicant's work and the quality of the applicant's work products.

Proposal Evaluation Criteria and Next Steps

    Proposals will be evaluated based on methodology and scope outlined 
in the proposed work plan. An ability to deliver, in a timely manner, a 
quality work product as determined by qualifications including prior 
experience, references, budget, and timelines is paramount. The Council 
may request additional information as deemed necessary or negotiate 
modifications prior to providing support for a proposal. Once a 
proposal is selected for funding, a formal contract will be provided to 
the applicants.

Disclaimer

    1. This project is being funded by federal funding authorized under 
the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act through 
NOAA Fisheries Service and the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management 
Council NOAA award number NA20NMF4410011. Compliance with the Magnuson-
Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Pub. L. 104-208 as 
amended), the current requirements of the Federal Office of Management 
and Budget, the Department of Commerce financial assistance standard 
terms and conditions, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric financial 
assistance administrative terms, all special award conditions specific 
to this award and all parts of the Uniform Guidance at Title 2 of the 
Code of Federal Regulations must be maintained.
    2. The contractor is responsible for all costs conducting the work 
and presenting the final results to the Scientific and Statistical 
Committees and Council.
    3. Proposals and their accompanying documentation will not be 
returned, but retained as part of the Councils administrative 
documents.
    4. All applicants included in the proposal must disclose any 
conflicts of interest and/or pending civil/criminal/fishery legal 
actions.
    5. The Council reserves the right to accept or reject any or all 
applications received, negotiate with all qualified applicants, cancel 
or modify this request for proposals in part or in its entirety, or 
change the application guidelines, when it is in the best interests of 
the Council.

    Dated: July 7, 2021.
Tracey L. Thompson,
Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National 
Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2021-14785 Filed 7-12-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3510-22-P