Territorial Use Rights in Fisheries (TURFs) are gaining renewed attention as a potential tool for sustainable fisheries management in small-scale fisheries. This growing popularity comes despite the fact that there are still unresolved questions about the most effective TURF designs. One of the key questions is the role of TURF size in their efficacy both from ecological and social standpoints. This study explores the expected effects of existing TURF sizes on yields for TURF systems in Chile, México and Japan. The expected effect of larval dispersal and adult movement on yields was simulated for TURFs in each system. The results show that the analyzed TURF systems fall into three main categories: (a) TURFs that are of adequate size to eliminate the expected negative effects of both adult and larval movement, (b) TURFs that are large enough to eliminate the expected negative effects of adult movement, but not the effects of larval dispersal, and c) TURFs that are too small to eliminate the expected impacts on yield of both adult and larval movement. These analyses suggest that either existing models of TURF performance are incomplete or that there is significant scope for improved performance with altered TURF designs. Considering these alternatives, empirical evidence from the TURFs deemed too small suggests that complementary management tools can enhance TURF performance when natural or social constraints prevent the construction of TURFs of optimal size.
Recent coastal planning measures in south-east Portugal (Algarve), where offshore aquaculture developments were set up in fishing areas aiming to maximize expected utility of seafood production activities, raised some discontentment. Public policies created to safeguard offshore aquaculture (OSA) producers and limit small-scale fishing (SSF) activities must be adjusted accordingly in order to maximize income and keep discontentment at a minimum. We collected primary data from stakeholders, fishers (n = 18) and offshore aquaculture operators (n = 3) through participatory workshops and interviews by eliciting problematic issues derived from the offshore area creation and their relative relevance. We used these data to populate conditional probability tables and construct a related influence diagram (Bayesian belief networks) to model the affected system. We selected nine scenarios based on navigability and aquaculture area size with the aim of finding the best expected utility combinations for the OSA – SSF system. The inferred results show that maximizing employment and keep pollution at low levels were the most influential factors to keep the system at a satisfactory level. The best decision was not to enlarge the aquaculture area, but to condition the access to other operational stakeholders, namely SSF operators from nearby areas. The overall results of the Bayesian belief network can be used to recommend coastal planners and decision-makers to deal with the interaction between OSA and SSF activities.
Catch and fishing effort time series are used by managers to safeguard the availability of resources in the future. Fisheries organizations estimate the status of a stock and the levels for sustainable harvest. Based on these indicators, regulations are developed to guarantee the availability of food and sustain economic growth. For example, tuna stocks are important not only in terms of nutrition, but also for the welfare, culture, revenue, and employment of the countries that rely upon them. However, fisheries time-series are the result of many natural and non-natural factors and are usually difficult to predict. Here, we propose a method to aggregate fisheries time series in space and time, to detect hidden periodicities, to predict the time series in the future and to identify the most stressed locations in the fishing area. We apply our method to tuna fisheries data in the Indian Ocean and compare it with respect to other methods. We demonstrate that the method is able to highlight periodic patterns in this high fishing activity area and to forecast the fisheries time series in the future. We use a research e-Infrastructure to comply with modern approaches supporting reproducibility, repeatability, and results sharing.
This thematic series, entitled “Enhancing Stewardship in Latin America and Caribbean Small-Scale Fisheries”, emerged as part of a joint effort to bridge Latin-American scholars interested in networking on small-scale fisheries in the region. Built on results presented at two meetings (‘Too Big to Ignore’ (TBTI) Workshop in Curitiba, Brazil, and the 2nd World Small-Scale Fisheries Congress in Merida, Mexico), this issue combines a unique collection of emergent and pressing issues related to small-scale fisheries in Latin America. It comprises of theoretical, methodological and policy-related aspects across a range of topics such as co-management, biodiversity conservation, governance challenges, and territorial tenure, in seven countries - predominantly from South America. In this Introduction, we provide some background to the similarities and diversity within the Latin America and Caribbean region, and their relevance to small-scale fisheries stewardship. Subsequently, we briefly introduce the contributions that range from cross-scale governance in Chile, cooperativism in Mexico, species introduction in Bolivia, interactive governance in the Galápagos and co-management in Uruguay, Brazil and Colombia, to territorial losses in Brazil. Multiple contexts and processes, theoretical and analytical perspectives (multi-stakeholders, socio-ecological systems, cross-scale issues, territorial approach) are highlighted, as well as the policy challenges to safeguard small-scale fisheries from numerous pressures such as urbanization, industrial expansion, tourism, pollution, and conservation policies. This series aims at inciting further consideration of innovative perspectives to bridge local communities, academics, practitioners and policy makers in joint efforts to promote priority action on issues that require immediate attention and transdisciplinary multidimensional outlooks on that important sector.
Marine protected areas (MPAs) have largely proven to be effective tools for conserving marine ecosystem, while socio-economic benefits generated by MPAs to fisheries are still under debate. Many MPAs embed a no-take zone, aiming to preserve natural populations and ecosystems, within a buffer zone where potentially sustainable activities are allowed. Small-scale fisheries (SSF) within buffer zones can be highly beneficial by promoting local socio-economies. However, guidelines to successfully manage SSFs within MPAs, ensuring both conservation and fisheries goals, and reaching a win-win scenario, are largely unavailable. From the peer-reviewed literature, grey-literature and interviews, we assembled a unique database of ecological, social and economic attributes of SSF in 25 Mediterranean MPAs. Using random forest with Boruta algorithm we identified a set of attributes determining successful SSFs management within MPAs. We show that fish stocks are healthier, fishermen incomes are higher and the social acceptance of management practices is fostered if five attributes are present (i.e. high MPA enforcement, presence of a management plan, fishermen engagement in MPA management, fishermen representative in the MPA board, and promotion of sustainable fishing). These findings are pivotal to Mediterranean coastal communities so they can achieve conservation goals while allowing for profitable exploitation of fisheries resources.
Groupers are highly targeted and vulnerable reef fishes. The effects of fishing pressure on the density of three reef fishes were investigated in 21 islands outside (n=15) and inside (n=6) a Marine Protected Area (MPA) at the Paraty Bay, Brazilian southeastern coast. Two valued groupers (Epinephelus marginatus and Mycteroperca acutirostris) and a non-target grunt (Haemulon aurolineatum) were studied. The total biomass of fish caught in each island was considered as a measure of current fishing pressure, while the island distance from the villages was considered as a measure of past fishing pressure. Fish densities were recordedin number and biomass. The biomass of M. acutirostris was inversely related to current fishing pressure, which did not affect the other two fishes. The density of E. marginatus increased with the island distance from one of the fishing villages, which indicated that past fishing may have had decreased the abundance of E. marginatus. Densities of the three fishes and fishing pressure did not differ between islands inside and outside the MPA. Data on fishing pressure, densities of groupers and coral cover were combined here to assign conservation scores to islands. A redefinition of MPA boundaries to reconcile fish conservation, fishing activities and fishers’ food security was proposed.
The geographic distribution of Octopus mimus Gould, 1852 is unclear, as most records are restricted to coastal localities of Peru and Chile, and some references have mentioned its presence off Central America. It is unknown whether this octopus is found off Ecuador as two previous unpublished records have suggested. The aim of the present study is to identify genetically the main octopus captured in a marine protected area known as Reserva de Produccion Faunistica Marino-Costera Puntilla de Santa Elena (REMACOPSE) off the Santa Elena peninsula, Ecuador. Samples collected from the local fishery were used to test the presence of this species based on the sequences of three mitochondrial markers and using a Bayesian approach. The phylogenetic analysis confirms that O. mimus inhabits the REMACOPSE. The results also indicate that the octopus specimens captured in the fishery from this marine protected area, are more closely related to O. mimus specimens from Central America than those from South America. The genetic identification of two groups of O. mimus could be associated with the different marine environmental conditions of the two biogeographic provinces. The finding in this study represents an important step for posterior research on the biology and fishery of octopus in Ecuador.
Small-scale fisheries are increasingly studied around the world due to their “too big to ignore” ecological and economic impacts. Understanding their limitations and interactions with environmental dynamics is crucial for a more comprehensive management. Utilizing spring-summer gillnet fishery data from the Río de la Plata estuarine region, we addressed the influence of environmental drivers on Mustelus schmitti shark yield (individuals per 100 m net and 24 h soak time). In particular, we applied a two-stage boosted regression tree (Delta-BRT) approach to investigate relationships between environmental predictors and both smoothhound presence and relative yield. Results suggested that M. schmitti presence was most influenced by distance to coast, latitude and temperature, and the relative yield by distance to coast, month and wind. Fishery success was more likely to occur at long distances from the shore, southernmost locations, during early spring when temperature remains cool, and under environmental factors favouring the occurrence of the salinity front (28–30 range) over the fishing ground. Interannual differences in M. schmitti distribution were mainly explained by changes in salinity conditions driven by extreme anomalies in freshwater discharge. This study provides insight into considering environmental importance on resources availability for a more effective management of small-scale fisheries settled along environmental boundaries.
Beach seine gear is one of the prominent fishing gears in Nile Perch fishery. Before Nile Perch was introduced to the lake, beach seines the species targeted with beach seine were Tilapia, Bagrus, Haplochromis, Protopterus and Labeo. In 1994, beach seines were banned in Tanzania and by 2004, this particular regulation and others, were harmonized and applied to the entire Lake as a result of implementation of Regional Plan of Action to Prevent, Deter and Eliminate Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing on Lake Victoria. The paper describes research findings on how the Nile Perch (NP) beach seine fishery is organized in Lake Victoria, Tanzania. The paper is guided by the following research questions: How is the Fisheries Department in Tanzania trying to govern the fisheries of Lake Victoria? How the beach seine fishery is governed in reality? What are the drivers for its continuity despite the ban? What are the counter-tendencies at local level and how and why do they emerge? We argues that it is the markets and associated graft – that drives coordination between the beach seine fishery; and the networks that depend on individuals’ network motivations – to get money, that together shape the fishery’s management and governance.
Artisanal fleets represent one of the most sustainable fishing segments. Under the current Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), a key issue consists of quantifying their contribution to employment and value added generation in local economies, but methodological tools have not been specifically developed to analyze this question and few empirical quantifications have been carried out due to lack of information (output, intermediate consumptions, primary inputs, etc.). This paper presents a methodology to measure the importance of artisanal fleets in an economy, on the basis of input-output (IO) analysis and by applying a disaggregation procedure that allows for distinguishing their activity when this information is aggregated into one of the sectors observable on an IO table. An empirical exercise has been conducted for the case of the artisanal fishing fleet of Asturias (region in Northwest Spain) by drawing together many different sources of data concerning its activity and by splitting the whole “Fisheries and aquaculture” sector in the symmetric IO table. The new IO table has allowed to estimate the impact of the artisanal fishing fleet's activity, showing that it exerted in 2010 higher multiplier effects on regional employment and income than the whole economy and the rest of the fisheries sector (basically, the industrial fleet). Findings also revealed that the potential of the artisanal fleet to generate gross value added is particularly important. Our results also suggest that sectoral disaggregation of IO tables is a highly versatile, useful and replicable methodology for socioeconomic studies of artisanal fisheries.