The aim of the Fish Resource Research Department is to create a scientific basis for sustainable use of fish resources in the waters in Latvia (The Baltic Sea, Gulf of Riga and inland waters). The department accounts and assesses the resources of internationally regulated fish species and examines unregulated fish stock and its condition in natural sea and inland waters. The Fish Resources Research Department evaluates the influence of fishing, angling and the environmental conditions of fish stock and biological diversity. It also ensures the monitoring of fishing fleet, fish processing and aquaculture operations and provides economic assessment.
The principal task of the Fish Resource Research Department is to ensure the implementation of “The Latvian National Program for Collection of Fisheries Data” funded by the European Maritime and Fisheries fund, and the agreement on the research of fish resources in Latvia which has been concluded with the Ministry of Agriculture by collecting, summarizing and analysing the biological, fishing and economic data.
The Marine Division performs research work in The Baltic Sea, Gulf of Riga and in the coastal waters by organising research surveys with the aim to obtain biological information about the main species of fish that are economical important: herring, sprat, cod, flounder as well as about other fish species within the framework of biological monitoring. The biological data and statistical fishing data obtained are used for annual assessment of the condition status of fish stock and for the preparation of forecasts and scientific advice. The surveys of ichthyoplankton (fish eggs and larvae) are made for the purpose of assessment of the success of spawning of pelagic fish and for the estimation of recruitment of the stocks in the open part of the sea.
Oceanographic and hydro-meteorological observations are performed for the assessment of the condition of the environment of the Baltic Sea.
Division of Inland Waters and Fish Restocking performs research work with fish in inland waters of Latvia (rivers, lakes and other water bodies). The main directions of research are related to the assessment of the state of fish stocks and natural reproduction of migratory fish as well as the influence of fishing, angling and environmental conditions on fish stocks and biological diversity. The Inland Water and Fish Restocking Division collects and stores the data regarding fishing, angling and farming of fish resources in Latvia. Scientific fishing performed by the researchers of the division provides data not only about the fish species that are important for fisheries but also about biological diversity in the waters of Latvia.
The main task of the Division is to provide assessment of quality of reproduction measures of valuable fish species. The Division analyses migration of farmed salmonids that are released in natural waters and assesses the intensity of return of salmon and sea trout. The Division maintains the data base of tagged fish which contains biological data and information about fish migration and places of recapture, etc. Within the framework of reproduction program, there is assessment of smoltification of salmon and sea trout in order to detect the best time and place for fish releasing. In compliance with its competence, the Division provides a scientific advice in the matters of aquaculture.
The Information and Data Division ensures informative support for the needs of the department, including, entering and storage of the information and access to it. It also prepares informative reports and reviews containing updated/summarized data regarding fishing and the economics of fish processing and aquaculture which are submitted.
The principal task is the informative support to fishery science and sector for:
- The structures of the European Commission, The Scientific, Technical and Economic Committee for Fisheries (STECF), and its working and expert group;
- The International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) and the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission (HELCOM);
- National institutions, including the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Environment Protection and Regional Development, the Rural Support Service (RSS), the State Environmental Service (SES), the Central Board of Statistics (CSP);
- local governments, public organisations and companies.
The Information and Data Division ensures also work of scientific library.
The Scientific Library of the Fish Resources Research Department
The foundation of the library is developed by collecting and systemising publications and documents in the areas of sea and water science, as well as fishing and aquaculture. The fond of the library contains more than 20 thousand printing works and original copies (books, periodicals). A substantial part of the stock consists of the publications of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES), the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) as well as the publications of fishery research institutes of the Baltic Sea Countries.
Since 2002, the library is the member of the Association of European Aquatic Sciences Libraries and Information Centres (EURASLIC) and the International Association of Aquatic and Marine Science Libraries and Information Centres (IAMSLIC).