Data provided from research vessels are often sporadic or specific to a particular campaign or process study. On the other hand, fishing vessels ply Europe’s coastal seas at all times of year and in almost all weather conditions. In that sense, fishing vessels are under-utilized resources in terms of recovering oceanographic data.
The RECOPESCA initiative led by IFREMER in France and the Fishery and Oceanography ObservingSystem (FOOS), developed and conducted by CNR in Italy, have led to routine recovery of such data from fishing vessels on a pilot basis.
The approach is quite novel, and further developments are still expected to enhance both for sensors (new parameters, e.g. fluorescence) and data transmission from sea to shore (from GSM to satellite). However, times are mature enough to organize the data in the JERICO server and to link them to the existing regional ocean observing system portals (MOON and IBI) so making them available to the coastal operational systems.