Technology developed to ‘count’ fish

    Census. Fish-I generates data not just on fish count but also on size and population.
    Census. Fish-I generates data not just on fish count but also on size and population.

    Fish-I is now ready for the market.

    It is a new and efficient way to count fish in the sea.

    It is also a cost-effective method of performing fish census using a camera and fish video software.

    It generates data on fish count, biomass, fish size and population.

    Using a hardware-software tandem, it semi-automates the process, allowing for rapid reef fish assessment, saving on time and resources.

    The technology was developed by research teams led by Dr. Prospero Naval Jr. of the Department of Computer Science and Dr. Laura David of the Marine Science Institute, both at the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman.

    In the process the researchers have established their own spin-off company of the same name, Fish-I Inc.

    The technology was made possible by the Funding Assistance for Spin-Off and Translation of Research for Advancing Commercialization (FASTRAC) program of the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development, Department of Science and Technology (DOST).

    The funding covered the improvement and testing of the prototype in the marine environment, data collection and market validation to potential clients.

    Included as the output of the project is a Technology Licensing Agreement and Security and Exchange Commission registration for the spinoff company.

    The FISH-I technology was previously funded by DOST’s Technology Application and Promotion Institute under its Technology Innovation for Commercialization Program.

    With over 1,600 Marine Protected Areas and a few fish experts in the country to conduct a fish census, the FISH-I technology enables local governments to conduct fish diversity and population census faster and easier.

    It will help empower local coastal communities to conduct the reef assessment themselves, making them more conscious of their marine resources.

    The data collected will provide guidance on the best time to fish and declare open and close season for reef fisheries.

    The UP team has serviced more than 16 local governments with the technology and are currently working on other clients who wish to avail of the fish census service.

    The FISH-I technology won the National Grand Prize in the 2017 Alfredo M. Yao Intellectual Property Awards-Professional Level at the 43rd Philippines Business Expo.