MULTIFAN-CL is a computer program that implements a statistical, length-based, age-structured model for use in fisheries stock assessment. The model is a convergence of two previous approaches. The original MULTIFAN model (Fournier et al. 1990) provided a method of analysing time series of length-frequency data using statistical theory to provide estimates of von Bertalanffy growth parameters and the proportions-at-age in the length-frequency data. The model and associated software were developed as an analytical tool for fisheries in which large-scale age sampling of catches was infeasible or not cost effective, but where length-frequency sampling data were available. MULTIFAN provided a statistically-based, robust method of length-frequency analysis that was an alternative to several ad hoc methods being promoted in the 1980s.
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