Modeling Protogynous Hermaphrodite Fishes Workshop

August 29 - 30, 2012

Final Workshop Report


A workshop was convened on August 29-30, 2012 that addressed the need for improved assessment approaches of protogynous fish. The assessment of protogynous fish is challenging because current methods are limited in their ability to address species that operate first as female and then as male during different life stages. Because males occur secondarily in the protogynous species, males are larger and therefore targeted by the fishing industry. Fishing pressure on the larger males can skew sex ratios, potentially causing the age or size at transition to occur in younger or smaller fish. Further, available fishery dependent and independent data may be limited, making it difficult to provide sex-at-age or sex-at-length to support assessment analyses. Workshop participants collaborated to develop recommendations for improving data collection and modeling approaches, and to identify additional research needs for better understanding the effects of fisheries on protogynous hermaphroditic populations.


  1. Describe and define the types of databases needed to model protogynous fish population dynamics.
  2. Examine current and innovative methods for modeling the dynamics of protogynous fish, including methods for deriving biological reference points.
  3. Describe the pros and cons of applying the different modeling approaches discussed under objective 2.
  4. Produce research recommendations on the: a) Types of data collections needed to more realistically model the population dynamics of protogynous fishes, and b) Future work needed to identify modeling strategies that will be robust to various data limitations/deficiencies.

Workshop Materials