Data collection through an electronic citizen science platform and human dimension research (39122)

Project Details

Description

This project supports DTU Aqua's research activities that relate to research on elements of recreational fisheries with focus on two core elements; research in human dimension aspects and research in citizen science methods for data collection that can support management of recreational fisheries.

The major part of this project is focused on Fangstjournalen, a national citizen science database where anglers in a standardized way can report fishing trips and catches in lakes, streams, on the coast and in the sea. Over time this data can potentially be used to track temporal changes in catch rates and size distributions as a proxy for the state of the fishery, thereby creating a better knowledge base for the management of recreational fisheries in Denmark. Recruitment to the platform is readily available for all that has internet access or access to the app via smartphone. DTU Aqua launched the citizen science “Fangstjournalen” platform 15 January 2016 and by 1 October 2021, ~14.000 anglers have signed up as participants resulting in ~58.000 registered fishing trips.

Central project tasks includes platform maintenance, platform development, recruitment of citizen science participants, evaluation of citizen science data and collaboration with similar projects around the globe. Platform maintenance includes for example regular user interactions/feedback, tests of mobile app/browser updates and bug fixing (in collaboration with the external technical developer).

Development is mostly focused on inclusion of new features on the digital platform that can add value to the participants and thereby retain existing participants as well as attract new participants. Random examples are integration with existing catch reporting in fishing clubs and associations, presentation of fisheries statistics for local waters, onsite information about regulations such as closed areas. Ongoing recruitment of participants to the platform is also in focus e.g. through advertisement in Danish angling magazines, presentations at major angling events, newsletters from the platform using data collected by the anglers e.g. showing monthly catch rates, monthly differences in fish sizes, and other trends. The purpose being to show the participants that their collected data is usefull and being used. Newsletters are published on a dedicated facebook page as well as on “www. fiskepleje.dk”

Central to the project is also ongoing exploration of the quality of the citizen science data collected by the platform. Hence, citizen science data are evaluated against data from traditional data collecting methods, such as creel surveys and recall surveys.

The use of angler apps, sometimes in combination with citizen science projects, are growing in abundance around the globe. DTU Aqua was among the first in the world to establish a national citizens science platform supported by an angler app and are therefore often contacted by international colleagues involved in emerging platforms for advice and collaboration and a part of the project is directed towards this. This is further facilitated by collaboration with members of the ICES working group WGRFS (Working Group in Recreational Fisheries Surveys).

Understanding the human dimensions of recreational angling is central for sustainable fisheries management. The second overall part of this project therefore aim to build up knowledge about different human dimension aspects of recreational angling. Currently this primarily include a) an exploration of factors that can explain future recruitment patterns of new participant into recreational angling. This is done in collaboration with Nordic partners using a Delphi survey approach. b) research into various methods that can be used to collect data from recreational fisheries, e.g. panel surveys, creel surveys, web surveys and finally c) a survey that explore local economic value of recreational fishery using Lake Tissø as a case example.

Partners
National Institute of Aquatic Resources, DTU Aqua (coordinator)
Various angling clubs, Denmark
University of Copenhagen, Denmark 
Ball State University, USA
CEFAS, UK
ICES, Denmark  

Funding
This project is coordinated by DTU Aqua and primarily funded by the Danish Rod and Net Fishing License Funds with the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, Tips and Lotto and the Nordic Council as secondary funding bodies.

Research area: Freshwater Fisheries and Ecology
StatusActive
Effective start/end date01/01/2015 → …

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