The Access Point Angler Intercept Survey (APAIS) in Maryland


The Access-Point Angler Intercept Survey is a creel survey of saltwater recreational anglers, conducted along the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico coasts of the United States. This survey is part of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries’ Marine Recreational Information Program, and the information collected is used to develop estimates of recreational catch for many saltwater species. These estimates are then used by Maryland Fisheries managers in stock assessments and to develop quotas and recreational fishing regulations.

The survey interviews are conducted in person by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources field staff at saltwater and brackish water fishing locations such as boat ramps, piers, beaches, jetties, marinas, etc… Anglers fishing from shore or returning from private, rental or charter boat trips are interviewed at the completion of their trips. Anglers on headboats are also interviewed by field interviewers who ride along with the permission of the captain. Headboat surveys collect important information on discard catch.

The Access-Point Angler Intercept Survey has been conducted for over 26 years. Before 2016, this survey was conducted in Maryland by an out-of-state contractor working for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries. In 2016, a new management structure for the conduct of the Access-Point Angler Intercept Survey on the Atlantic Coast was implemented. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries retains primary accountability for the Survey and is responsible for survey design, catch and effort estimation, and public data dissemination. The Atlantic Coast Cooperative Statistics Program is now the central coordinator of the Access-Point Angler Intercept Survey and is responsible for data entry, compilation, quality control checks and edits, and the formatting and delivery of data to National Oceanic and Atmospheric AdministrationFisheries. Maryland Department of Natural Resources staff conduct interviews and collect data using protocols designed by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries.




The data we collect:

  • Number of anglers on a boat
  • Number of Fin Fish kept
  • Number of Fin Fish released
  • Lengths and weights of fish kept
  • Lengths and weights of discard fish (headboat assignments only)
  • Hours spent fishing
  • Target Species
  • Area fished
  • Mode of Fishing
  • Gear type used
  • State of residence

Links to More Information:

Access-Point Angler Intercept Survey Fact Sheet

Access-Point Angler Intercept Survey FAQ