Simon Fraser University fish physiologists Tony Farrell and Patricia Gallaugher, and statistician and environmental scientist Rick Routledge are this year's recipients of the eighth annual Murray A. Newman awards.
The Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre bestows the two awards, one for excellence in aquatic conservation and the other for pioneering marine research.
For the first time, the awards have been bestowed on a group of scientists. It is also the first time that a woman is among the recipients and that a single group is the recipient of both awards.
Farrell, Gallaugher and Routledge were jointly honoured with both awards for their creation of a fish recovery box that is saving coho salmon caught during sockeye fisheries.
They custom made a recovery box that is preventing up to 88 percent of by-caught coho from dying. Gillnetters and seiners are now allowed to catch more sockeye because of their use of the recovery box.
The two awards also recognize Farrell, Gallaugher and Routledge for collaborating with the fishing industry, in particular commercial gillnetter Jake Fraser, in developing the recovery box and educating communities about its beneficial use.
Workshops on the recovery box were mounted through SFU's continuing studies in science program.
Friends and colleagues of Murray Newman, the founding director of the Vancouver Aquarium, established the awards after his retirement in 1994. They were created in honour of his research and work in educating the public about the marine world.