Registration open for ‘Introductory Fisheries Science’ online course

Published 11:05 am Monday, February 21, 2022

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Registration is open for North Carolina Sea Grant’s popular “Introductory Fisheries Science” course. Scott Baker and Sara Mirabilio, fisheries specialists with over 40 years of combined experience, will bring together state experts in new virtual classes designed for recreational and commercial fishers — and for anyone else interested in fisheries science.

“This year’s course is another broad overview of fisheries science, with examples specific to our state,” Baker says.

The online course begins February 22 and runs weekly on six consecutive Tuesday nights through March 29. “Introductory Fisheries Science” will cover fisheries life history, ecology, population assessment and more. Enrollment is limited and is available on a first-come, first-served basis for $20.

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“After attending last year’s course, 96% of respondents were pleased with their participation in the program,” Mirabilio says.

Participants in past years’ courses have noted a variety of benefits.

“I think it was highly beneficial to hear from a diversity of scientists and fisheries managers in the area,” reported one attendee.

“I hoped to gain better knowledge of how regulations on fishing are set by the state and how they oversee marine fisheries,” said another, “and my expectations were exceeded.”

Mirabilio says course-takers also sought to better understand fish stocks, especially what factors led to limits and closures.

“The classes provided me with that,” reported another participant. “I can see both sides a little more clearly now.”

This year’s online course again gathers a wide range of specialists. Academic experts will include Fred Scharf from UNC Wilmington, Jeff Buckel from NC State, Joel Fodrie and Janet Nye from UNC Chapel Hill and Rebecca Asch and Jim Morley from East Carolina.

“We’ll also have presenters again who bring state agency perspectives, including Jacob Boyd, Corrin Flora, Laura Lee, and Lee Paramore from the N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries,” Baker says, “as well as Kevin Dockendorf with the NC Wildlife Resource Commission.”

Susan White, executive director of North Carolina Sea Grant, says “Introductory Fisheries Science” plays an integral role in engaging and educating the community about commercial and recreational fishing efforts.

“This course brings the latest science and management information to the table in an approachable and applicable manner for anyone who wants to expand their own role on these topics,” says White.

To register, go to For more information, contact Scott Baker at 910-962-2492 or

– Dave Shaw, North Carolina Sea Grant