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NOAA Fisheries Hosts Thorny Skate Extinction Risk Workshop

NOAA Fisheries is hosting a Thorny Skate Extinction Risk Workshop to discuss the threats to thorny skates and their risk of extinction.

We are currently evaluating whether thorny skates should be listed under the Endangered Species Act. 

Where: Maritime Gloucester, 23 Harbor Loop Road, Gloucester, MA.

When: May 19 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Goals and objectives:

An extinction risk analysis (ERA) can be used to help evaluate the known or perceived risk to the continued persistence of a species. At the ERA Workshop, participants will review and discuss the information on the threats to thorny skate (Amblyraja radiata) noted in the petition and in the literature, available data sets and models regarding status; and types of ERAs that have been used for other species. A summary of the workshop will be prepared for use by the ERA working group and NOAA Fisheries. 

Following the workshop, an ERA working group comprised of invited participants with expertise in thorny skates or other elasmobranchs will review data and analysis on thorny skates and select a method to use to develop an extinction risk assessment for the species. Following the discussion and results of the extinction risk assessment, the ERA working group will document their individual expert opinions and findings related to extinction risk for the species in a report. Both the workshop summary and the ERA working group’s report will be independently peer reviewed and will be used to help inform the listing determination for the species.

Invited Expert Participant Selection Criteria:

Invited working group participants were identified based on their working knowledge and recent experience with one or more of the following: 1) expertise in extinction risk analysis and/or population modeling; and/or 2) expertise in fisheries population dynamics, stock assessments and life history of elasmobranchs; and/or 3) advanced working knowledge of and recent experience developing and running population models with the available thorny skate data.

Working Group Invited Expert Participants:

Conference Line: 877-710-3752 
Participant Code: 7867681



9am: Welcome, Logistics, and Introductions (T. Lake)

9:20am: Background on the Thorny skate petition and listing process (T. Lake)

9:45am: Overview on Status Review (TBD)

10:10am: Break

10:15am: Overview of available data sets/models (K. Sosebee)

11:10am: Panel presentations (J. Mandelman)

11:30pm: Lunch on your own

12:45pm: Panel Presentations (J. Hare)

1:15pm: Public contributions to Thorny skate discussion (time limit TBD)

2:15pm: Overview of ERA methods (T. Curtis)

4:00pm: Final questions and closing remarks


Download the workshop information as a pdf.

Questions? Contact Tara Trinko Lake, Regional Office, at 978-282-8477 or