Catch Per Unit Effort (CPUE)

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Definition of Catch Per Unit Effort (CPUE):
Catch-Per-Unit-Effort (CPUE) - also called catch rate - is frequently the single most useful index for long-term monitoring of a fishery. Declines in CPUE may mean that the fish population cannot support the level of harvesting. Increases in CPUE may mean that a fish stock is recovering and more fishing effort can be applied.

CPUE can therefore be used as an index of stock abundance, where some relationship is assumed between that index and the stock size. Catch rates by boat and gear categories, often combined with data on fish size at capture, permit a large number of analyses relating to gear selectivity, indices of exploitation and monitoring of economic efficiency.[1]
This is the common definition for Catch Per Unit Effort (CPUE), other definitions can be discussed in the article


  1. FAO - Corporate Document Repository