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Fisheries science: Data to Decision

Release date: December 2021
Infographic: Data to Decision
An infographic depicting the Data to Decision process which includes data collection, stock assessment, science advice, and fisheries management decisions.

How fisheries science informs and contributes to sustainable fisheries management.

Data collection

  • Data can be fishery dependent (e.g. from industry fishing activities), or fishery independent (e.g. from targeted surveys).
  • Output: Indicators of abundance, biological information, catch from multiple sources (commercial, recreational, Food, Social and Ceremonial)

Stock Assessment

  • Data are analyzed using statistical methods and mathematical models to learn more about the fish stock.
  • Output: Estimates of the reference points, stock status, evaluation of harvest control rules

Science advice

  • Science advice is peer-reviewed through DFO's Canadian Science Advisory Secretariat.
  • Output: Science advice documents, projections of potential future stock status under different catch levels


  • Science advice is considered along with other sources of information in fisheries management decisions.
  • Output: Management measures such as harvest levels, Integrated Fisheries Management Plans, and Rebuilding Plans

Learn more About fisheries science: Fisheries science

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