ICES Official Web Sites
Working Group on Fisheries 
Acoustics, Science and Technology

Chair: Dr. Richard O'Driscoll

The ICES Working Group on Fisheries Acoustics, Science and Technology (WGFAST) focuses on the development and application of science and technology (i.e. acoustic and other sensors) to observe aquatic environments.

WGFAST initiates and reviews investigations by scientists and technologists concerned with the design, planning and execution of all forms of acoustic and other related measurements and observations pertaining to: abundance estimation and distribution of fish and plankton, fishing operations, and the classification and mapping of the seafloor; including behavioural, statistical and capture topics. The Working Group's activities stimulates advances in theory, technology, standard methodology, survey design and fish behaviour, and provides advice on application of these techniques to aquatic ecologists, assessment biologists, fishery managers and industry.

WGFAST was created in 1984 following a recommendation from the ICES Fish Capture Committee in 1982. A historic review of WGFAST activities is provided in Fernandez et al. (2002). The working group reports to the ICES SCICOM Steering Group on Ecosystem Surveys Science and Technology (SSGESST).

WGFAST members and participants are nominated by their respective national (ICES Delegates). Scientists from any member countries of ICES or from the research organizations having an observer status can participate to the WGFAST activities and meetings. The working group has an annual meeting, generally in April or May. It reports to the SSGESST at the ICES Annual Science Conference that is held in early fall. At approximately five to seven year intervals, a symposium is held for information exchange among fisheries acousticians, physicists, engineers, biologists, and ecologists. To date, seven symposia have been held: Bergen, Norway (1973, 1982, 2008); Seattle, USA (1987); Aberdeen, Scotland (1995); Montpellier, France (2002), and Nantes, France (2015).

This Web site aims to facilitate the distribution of information on WGFAST activities among members and other interested scientists. It is supported by the Fisheries Acoustics Research Lab, at the University of Washington, Seattle, USA.

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