Volume 50

An Economic and Environmental Analysis of Commercial Catch in St. Thomas and St. John, US. Virgin Islands

Keithly Jr., W.R.; García-Moliner, G.
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Date: November, 1997

Pages: 1099-1114

Event: Proceedings of the Fiftiesth-Annual Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute

City: Merida

Country: Mexico


Commercial fishermen in the United States Virgin Islands are required to submit trip tickets on a monthly basis. Some of the information reported on these tickets includes: (1) species harvested and related poundage, (2) area fished, (3) date of fishing trip, and (4) amount of gear employed on the specified trip. The trip ticket data for 1995 96 (July through June of the following year) were used to estimate production functions for two of the principal types of fishing in the St. Thomas and St. John area: (1) pot fishing for finfish and (2) pot fishing for lobster. The estimated production functions associated with these two identified fisheries were specified as catch per trip in the identified fishery in relation to boat length, amount of gear employed, other revenues generated on the identified trip, area fished, and seasonality. The two equations were estimated using a traditional Cobb-Douglas functional form. Results associated with the estimated equations, together with the economic linkages derived therefrom. were, for the most part consistent with theory. In addition, location associated with fishing activities and seasonality were found, in some instances, to influence catch per trip. Overall, the results suggest that merit exists in employing the trip ticket data in commercial catch analyses for the U.S. Virgin Islands and that the information collected from the trip ticket data can be used to assist managers in the decision making process.

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