Document Type



Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Publication Date



The Trawl Survey provides crucial data to state, regional, and national fisheries management agencies, including the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC), the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC), the Mid‐Atlantic Fisheries Management Council (MAFMC), and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS). The MAFMC recognizes the juvenile trawl survey as one of the key predictors of Summer Flounder recruitment. Annual indices of juvenile abundance have been generated from trawl survey data for species of key recreational and ecological importance in the Virginia portion of Chesapeake Bay. These include Spot, Atlantic Croaker, Weakfish, Summer Flounder, Black Sea Bass, Scup, Striped Bass, White Perch, White Catfish, Channel Catfish, Blue Catfish, Silver Perch, American Eel, and Bay Anchovy.

We completed all planned tows (1,224) from July 2021 to June 2022 and collected 478,313 fishes. Bay Anchovy continue to be the most abundant species observed in the survey, accounting for 58% of all fishes collected. Of the 36 target species categories for which we provide indices of relative abundance, 29 species categories (considering YOY and age 1+ as distinct categories) exhibited below‐average abundance in 2021 – 2022. Five species categories exhibited average abundances including Atlantic Croaker, Black Sea Bass, White Perch YOY (York River) and age 1+ White Perch (Rappahannock and York rivers). Only age 1+ Blue Catfish (York and James rivers exhibited above‐average abundances in 2021‐2022.


doi: 10.25773/9WV1‐PS18


Fisheries, Chesapeake Bay

Publication Statement

Submitted to: Virginia Marine Resources Commission


Project Number: F-104-R-26 Submitted to: Virginia Marine Resources Commission