Collaborative adaptive management for bigfin squid applied to tourism-related activities in coastal waters of Northeast Taiwan
The bigfin squid Sepioteuthis lessoniana, a commercially important fishery resource and also an object of sightseeing for diving, are under risk situation arising from current management procedure in Taiwan. Significant decline in abundance of bigfin squid and destruction of suitable substrates for spawning of neritic squids in coastal waters of Northeast Taiwan has been noted by local fishermen in recent years. Local divers arbitrarily deployed bamboo clusters as a squid aggregation device, for mating and spawning, in order to restore the abundance of squid. The deployment of the devices was not approved by the government, in particular the fishery authorities. Following conflict and compromises, the bamboo clusters were placed in restricted regions with permission from the local government. However, the interim management measure faced a serious challenge. The fishing activity of fishermen and recreational anglers, who were not consulted for the interim measure, targeted the aggregated squids putting them at risk. To prevent hazards, a theoretical management model was proposed to involve and direct essential stakeholders in conservation and sustainable utilization of the resource. A fishbone diagram and spiral model was created to analyze and illustrate the potential problems. Collaborative management tools were applied to coordinate the participants' duties and responsibilities and build the interrelationships between them. Finally, a modified management model based on adaptive management strategies was developed to cope with the changing situations. This modified management model process might further serve as an example for conservation and management measures of other fisheries resources.