Meeting Agenda

Schedule-At-A-Glance – download (pdf)

Plenary Speakers


Douglas Austen, Ph.D – Executive Director – American Fisheries Society

Building the relevancy of AFS in addressing our fisheries challenges 

AFS is closing in on 150 years since it was first created as the American Fish Culturists Association in New York City.  Clearly, the nature of the challenges we face as fisheries professionals and the role of professional societies in addressing those challenges have evolved since then.  If AFS is going to continue to maintain or enhance its relevancy in addressing these ever changing needs it will need to continually evaluate its programs, its services, and the nature of fisheries science and management to ensure that it is optimally positioned.  In this discussion, I’ll look at these changing dynamics, identify some key factors, and explore ideas about how AFS and other professional societies are addressing these needs and what all of us will need to do in the years ahead to best position fisheries professionals to be effective and engaged in these important future challenges.


John M. Dettmers – Fishery Management Program Director – Great Lakes Fishery Commission

The Aquatic Connectivity Conundrum: when and where should efforts to improve connectivity take place?

Dams and barriers have been used by humans for centuries  At the same time, these barriers frequently have negative impacts on fish and other organisms.  There is increasing pressure from governments, non-government organizations, and the public to remove or modify barriers.  These proposals frequently look only at local benefits, without considering the broader ecological, social, and economic factors that need to be taken into account for wise decision making.  I will explore how both removal of barriers and keeping them in place may make sense, depending on primary objectives.

Technical Sessions

Information coming soon!


Poster Presentations

Information coming soon!


Concurrent Continuing Education Workshops


Expanding Your Fisheries Techniques Toolbox: Developing a User Group

Answering difficult questions in fisheries science and management requires an ever-expanding set of approaches and technologies. Here we will provide a forum for interaction—participants will act as instructor and student. Those with an interesting technological method to demonstrate can provide a “blitz” presentation of 5–10 minutes to introduce the method and follow up by bringing hands-on materials for “show and tell”. Question and answer sessions will follow each demonstration.

Examples may include, but are not limited to: acoustic- and radio-based telemetry, electro-anesthesia, internal and external tagging methods, remote monitoring stations, and many more!

Instructors: You may be a local expert in one technology or analysis but a complete novice to others. As such, registrants are encouraged to share their expertise or simply attend and gain exposure to the many approaches covered! In February, registered participants will be contacted to flesh out the schedule with techniques, approaches, and other topics.

Workshop participation will be capped at 20 to encourage free interaction within the group.


Pennsylvania & Ohio Fish Identification Refresher

Identifying rare and even common fishes often challenges seasoned fisheries professionals. This workshop will provide an informal, hands-on review of difficult to identify fishes. Field and lab diagnostics will be covered using preserved specimens and known current distributions will be discussed. Furthermore, this workshop provides an opportunity to expand one’s identification skills through exposure to geographically unfamiliar ichthyofauna.

Materials: Specimens, lab equipment, and ID hand-out materials will be provided. A limited number of references (“Fishes of” books, field guides, etc.) will be available; attendees are encouraged to bring personal reference materials for Great Lakes, Interior, and Atlantic Slope drainages. We also encourage attendees to bring problematic specimens from their own collections.

Instructors: Local ichthyofauna specialists, Doug Fischer, Nongame Fisheries Biologist for Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, and Brian Zimmerman, Field Collections Coordinator for the Fishes of Ohio Inventory and Distribution Project from the Ohio State University Museum of Biodiversity–Fish Division will lead this workshop. Both Doug and Brian have extensive experience identifying and sampling the fish of Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Workshop participation will be capped at 20 to encourage free interaction within the group.