Dr. Paul Medley (center, seated), World Bank consultant for FishCore project, serves as the resource speaker during the technical meeting.

Staff from the Department of Agriculture-National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (DA-NFRDI) and DA-Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) participated in a technical meeting on fish stock assessment with regard to the implementation of the Philippine Fisheries and Coastal Resiliency (FishCore) project. The meeting was held on May 10-12, 2023 at NFRDI-Freshwater Fisheries Research and Development Center (FFRDC) in Butong, Taal, Batangas.

Dr. Paul Medley, World Bank consultant specializing in numerical modeling of fisheries, served as the guest expert on Bayesian estimation of spawning potential ratio (SPR) and biomass.

Bayesian estimation is a statistical method used to estimate parameters or values based on prior knowledge and observed data. In the context of estimating SPR and biomass, this method takes into account both existing information and new data collected.

Dr. Medley presented specific models including, JABBA Production Model and Fishblicc Model, that NFRDI and BFAR can use in fish stock assessments. Participants had a hands-on application of the models presented using sample data.

In a message, delivered by NFRDI Executive Director Dr. Lilian Garcia, she emphasized the importance of fish stock assessment in fishery management, particularly for informed decision-making, guidance in sustainable fishing practices, protecting biodiversity, and supporting the long-term sustainability of fisheries and coastal communities. “That is why, it is important that we take advantage of this occasion to learn and apply these new models in our work,” she said.

FishCore is a seven-year World Bank-funded project that prioritizes a comprehensive approach to fisheries governance, focusing on the social and ecological dimensions of the Philippines Waters and its resources. It is committed to using a science-based, participatory, and transparent framework.

NFRDI and BFAR have collaborated and finalized a work program to benefit fishers and stakeholders.

Also present during the meeting were NFRDI-FFRDC Chief Dr. Ma. Theresa Mutia; NSAP Co-Program Coordinator Francisco Torres, Jr.; and NFRDI technical staff from Capture Fisheries Research and Development Division, Planning, Policy and Information Division, and Training Division. ### (Rita dela Cruz)