This study estimates the harvesters’ dynamic target fishery choice by building an empirical model incorporating dynamic quota use with the insight from a theoretical model. The harvesters’ behavior, which purposes to maximize seasonal profit under constraints of the regulations, are theoretically modeled and solved using a dynamic optimization method. The solution motivates us to incorporate the dynamic quota use in a simple discrete choice model to estimate the harvesters’ choice. Choice behavior of fisheries has been analyzed using a discrete choice models.
The application of this model is implemented with an offshore fleet in Alaskan groundfish fishery, which has appropriate feature to apply the model such as multiple target choices and individual quota. The result indicates that the dynamic variable, quota use, adjusts the incentive to catch pollock for revenue, and it largely lessened the avoidance behavior. We run a simulation of a policy alternative that opens fishing season earlier using the parameter estimates and evaluate the potential effect of the policy on bycatch reduction induced by the change in harvesters’ fishery choice behavior.