Seasonal Migration Products based on National Marine Fisheries Service Data

Seasonal Maps of Taxa Abundance and Distribution All Years Combined (1963-2003)

Are there seasonal patterns to the distribution of major fish taxa in the Gulf of Maine?

Only the U.S. side of the international border is complete at this time (see figure).


Fish species commonly have annual patterns of movement within and beyond the Gulf of Maine and its adjacent sea areas. These movements are driven by the location of prey, predators, nursery habitats, spawning habitat, temperature, etc. Understanding the movement patterns and the driving factors for that movement can help ecosystem managers protect sensitive where and when stocks may be found, thereby providing access to explicit fish stocks, mineral resources, etc., while minimizing the repercussions to vulnerable, non-targeted resources.

By mapping the extant data on commercial fish species seasonal locations, COML GoMA is initiating this management tool, identifying gaps in knowledge, providing ecosystem managers with straw-man tools for evaluation, and priorities for further study.

Acadian Redfish

American Plaice

Atlantic Cod


Red Hake

Silver Hake

Spiny Dogfish

White Hake

Winter Flounder

Witch Flounder

Prototype Biophysical Maps of the Gulf of Maine: Large-scale migratory movements

The Gulf of Maine Area Program does not guarantee the accuracy of the data products provided and is not responsible for the misuse or misinterpretation of those products.

NMFS NEFSC Bottom Trawl Survey 1963-2003
This bottom trawl survey data are provided by the Northeast Fisheries Science Center of the U.S. National Marine Fisheries Service in Woods Hole, MA, USA. This is the U.S. analog to the DFO Bottom Trawl Survey. Data is provided for 1963 through 2003.