Migratory Bird Program
Conserving the Nature of America



This is the combined list of recommended strategies from all three working groups: Fisheries, Biota/Natural Communities and Human Dimensions. It was prioritized by all workshop participants on the last morning. The list is in priority order.

Highest Priority

  • Define criteria to identify acceptable impacts of cormorants on fish stocks of concern (both biological and social components).
  • Manage cormorant populations on a flyway basis: 1) establish Cormorant Flyway Technical Committee and 2) establish regional population objectives for cormorants.
  • Conduct studies that will provide additional demographic information to support population modeling. (Information lacking on reproductive success on northern breeding areas and survival in southern wintering areas).

High Priority

  • Northeast Fish and Wildlife Administrators should appoint a team to develop a communications plan.
  • Regional cormorant management recommendations should include a strong communications component.
  • Develop plans to protect known colonies of colonial nesting birds from cormorant invasion. Have involved agencies identify and describe their policies and functions concerning cormorants.
  • Develop, with stakeholders and target audiences, a set of protocols and information needs before taking management actions.
  • Inventory islands and assess habitat suitability in Northeast (to reflect on potential for expansion of nesting colonies).
  • Implementation of control should only be exercised where there is a known unacceptable impact based on scientific data and monitored to evaluate effectiveness.


  • Develop and distribute guidelines for modification of fish stocking practices to mitigate cormorant predation effects. Include the communication/education and research needs identified by the Fisheries Group (during the elements of discussion session).
  • Initiate and coordinate surveys of cormorant populations and monitoring of productivity throughout the Northeast; develop standard methods for such surveys.
  • Priority - modification of stocking practices for fish species preyed upon by cormorants.
  • Summarize what we know and communicate it (i.e.- Northeast fact sheet).
  • Communication message should be developed by interagency group.
  • USFWS and Sea Grant will provide resources as budgets permit.
  • Incorporate important research and outreach results in communications plan.

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Last updated: April 11, 2012