Recent calls have been made to pay greater attention to the social and cultural contexts of fisheries and their management. This paper explores how the recent Bourdieusian-inspired literature on the ‘good farmer’ might inform our discussion of fishers and their activities. Bourdieu's ideas of habitus, field and capital(s), and how these interact in (re)shaping the positioning as a ‘good fisher’, allows us to move beyond the myopic, economic, framing of fishers seen in much previous literature and fishing policy. Through in-depth interviews and participant observations in a small-scale fishing community in North Wales (UK), the paper explores the particularity of the fishing field, and notes the multiple performances and demonstrations required in order for individuals to position as a ‘good fisher’. It goes on to highlight the importance of these performances in developing social capital and the associated access to networks of support and reciprocity at sea. Central to these interrelations, the paper observes, is adhering to and internalising various ‘rules of the game’ – which include managing territories, respecting fishing gear, maintaining safety at sea, and the importance of keeping secrets. The paper moves on to consider the implications of these observations for the current and future management of fishing in such areas – noting how pre-existing and context-specific relations between fishers offer boundaries to what change might be achieved by new policies – before examining future agendas for research in this field.
Dredging presents a risk of injury or mortality to marine turtles via entrainment, vessel strike or the effects of noise and vibration. Dredging operations have increased in recent years, yet there remains an absence of supporting information for development proponents and regulators to accurately determine dredge-related impact predictions for marine turtles within an Environmental Impact Assessment. This absence therefore has implications for their conservation, as certain dredging impacts may be overlooked or the implementation of control measures and response strategies may be ineffective.
This study presents a case study involving a major resource development whose proponent undertook satellite tracking of 48 reproductively-active flatback turtles (Natator depressus) at different stages of its dredging operation (before: n = 20, during: n = 10 and after: n = 18). In addition, trained Marine Fauna Observers were on-board dredge vessels to mitigate interaction and detect injury and mortality events. We compared the dredge-related impact predictions stated in the Environmental Impact Assessment with the quantified dredge-related impact to flatback turtles as represented by changes to their movement and dive behaviour between each stage of the dredging operation and any injury and mortality events. Additionally, we considered the effectiveness of implemented dredge-related control measures in preventing their injury or mortality.
We found that during the active dredging operation, flatback turtles increased their use of the dredging areas. Dive behaviour results showed they undertook longer and deeper resting dives during dredging, utilising the now deeper waters of the dredging areas. Possible reasons for this preferential use of areas being dredged are discussed. Despite their increased use and the presence of active dredge vessels, no events of injury or mortality were recorded. The implemented control measures may have been effective in preventing injury or mortality, though the spatial scale of their effectiveness may have been smaller than first anticipated.
Our results are of great value for stakeholders involved in marine turtle conservation and managing dredging operations worldwide as no comparison of quantified marine turtle survivorship, movement and dive behaviour data at different stages of a dredging program has been recorded or reported previously.
We depict the relative sea-level rise scenarios for the year 2100 from four areas of the Italian peninsula. Our estimates are based on the Rahmstorf (2007) and IPCC-AR5 reports 2013 for the RCP-8.5 scenarios (www.ipcc.ch) of climate change, adjusted for the rates of vertical land movements (isostasy and tectonics). These latter are inferred from the elevation of MIS 5.5 deposits and from late Holocene sea-level indicators, matched against sea-level predictions for the same periods using the glacio-hydro-isostatic model of Lambeck et al. (2011). We focus on a variety of tectonic settings: the subsiding North Adriatic coast (including the Venice lagoon), two tectonically stable Sardinia coastal plains (Oristano and Cagliari), and the slightly uplifting Taranto coastal plain, in Apulia. Maps of flooding scenarios are shown on high-resolution Digital Terrain Models mostly based on Lidar data. The expected relative sea-level rise by 2100 will change dramatically the present-day morphology, potentially flooding up to about 5500 km2 of coastal plains at elevations close to present-day sea level.
The subsequent loss of land will impact the environment and local infrastructures, suggesting land planners and decision makers to take into account these scenarios for a cognizant coastal management. Our method developed for the Italian coast can be applied worldwide in other coastal areas expected to be affected by marine ingression due to global climate change.
Hostile acts against ships and mariners remain a global social and political phenomenon which usually reflects a high degree of socioeconomic vulnerability. The identification of the causes and driving factors behind the deteriorating maritime security has received considerable attention. However, their potential impact upon biodiversity conservation initiatives remains poorly evaluated. In the present study the spatial overlap between biodiversity hotspots and hotspots of hostile maritime acts are explored. The majority of such hostile acts occur in economically vulnerable countries, with the operation of their Marine Protected Areas largely depending on the revenue generated by visitors. Given that hostile maritime acts could cause financial losses and increase social and political instability, they could significantly alter conservation efficiency. Thus, it is critical to consider the way of incorporating maritime security risks into conservation agendas.
The present study characterised the socio-economic, operational and technical aspects of harvesting the gooseneck barnacle (Pollicipes pollicipes) along the southwestern coast of Portugal. For this purpose, face-to-face interviews were conducted with commercial harvesters of the two most representative fishery associations (covering 51% licensed harvesters) in the area of the Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina. Based on traditional ecological knowledge, this study confirmed the local importance, ancestral character and family traditions of this activity, which constitutes the exclusive occupation of nearly half of the interviewed harvesters and an important source for household incomes. In addition, data was also gathered on preferential fishing zones, harvesting effort and duration, daily catches and selling prices. The main concerns, problems and difficulties experienced in this activity relate to the excessive number of recreational harvesters, creating problems at the levels of exploitation, commercialisation, management and inspection. The study further confirms the rising interest and involvement of the commercial harvesters in enhancing the competences of the local fishery associations. In particular, local harvesters want to encourage the development of a co-management system comprising spatial-temporal measures to avoid conflicts of use over space and resources, as well as innovative marketing strategies to improve the recognition, value and traceability of the shellfish. Overall, the information gathered is most valuable for adopting an alternative approach based on the cooperation and co-responsibility at local and regional levels, involving the stakeholders in the proposal of management measures adapted to the specificities of this area, activity and resource.
In the coastal waters of Johor Straits, Peninsular Malaysia, the dugongs occur and their habitat suitability model has yet not been attempted, while it could be critical information for developing their conservation strategies. This study derived spatially explicit dugong population information on the abundance and distribution of dugongs based on fisher surveys. The survey revealed the highest dugong abundance around eastern areas, followed by southern areas of Johor Straits. Degradation of seagrass habitat, which dugong uses as feeding ground, could be the main reason for reducing dugong sighting around western areas. A habitat suitability map was produced based on dugong presence and interacting environmental factors such as seagrass biomass, distance from shoreline, and water depth. Using ArcGIS mapping capability, the data layers on those environmental factors were fied into MaxEnt. The MaxEnt model output showed seagrass biomass as the highest contributing factor to the likelihood of dugong presence. The model also estimated 20 kg/m2 of seagrass biomass, 3 km distance from shoreline and a water depth of 25 m as the optimum habitat condition for dugong population. The combination of fisher interview, habitat suitability, and risk modeling has the ability to provide adequate information required for monitoring and developing policy strategies for sustainable management and conservation of marine mammals.
European Marine Sites (EMS), designated under either the Habitats or Birds Directives, protect the biodiversity of the European Union (EU) and contribute to the implementation of the 1992 UN Convention on Biological Diversity . The introduction of this form of marine protected area (MPA), as a consequence of EU conservation directives, introduced new legal obligations in waters long exploited by inshore fishing communities. Although the Habitats and Birds Directive have been in place since 1992 and 1979 respectively (the 1979 Directive updated in 2009), it has not been until more recently (2014) that ongoing inshore fisheries activities in England, which predate designation of sites, have been systematically assessed and managed, for their impact in protected sites. In practice it was assumed by many MPA practitioners that at the time of designation of EMS, ongoing activities would be compatible with the conservation objectives of these sites. This paper illustrates the introduction of a general and systematic “revised approach” to managing fisheries in all English EMSs, and how this represented a change in government policy which can be traced directly to a legal campaign between 2008 and 2012 by two UK environmental Non-Governmental Organisations (eNGOs). The paper elucidates this iterative marine policy process analysing the dialogue between government bodies and eNGOs and show how the resulting interpretation of conservation law, has sought to resolve the tensions between the precautionary approach as emphasised by the eNGOs and the Government's desire for proportionality of response.
Land-based source pollutants (LBSP) actively threaten coral reef ecosystems globally. To achieve the greatest conservation outcome at the lowest cost, managers could benefit from appropriate tools that evaluate the benefits (in terms of LBSP reduction) and costs of implementing alternative land management strategies. Here we use a spatially explicit predictive model (InVEST-SDR) that quantifies change in sediment reaching the coast for evaluating the costs and benefits of alternative threat-abatement scenarios. We specifically use the model to examine trade-offs among possible agricultural road repair management actions (water bars to divert runoff and gravel to protect the road surface) across the landscape in West Maui, Hawaii, USA. We investigated changes in sediment delivery to coasts and costs incurred from management decision-making that is (1) cooperative or independent among landowners, and focused on (2) minimizing costs, reducing sediment, or both. The results illuminate which management scenarios most effectively minimize sediment while also minimizing the cost of mitigation efforts. We find targeting specific “hotspots” within all individual parcels is more cost-effective than targeting all road segments. The best outcomes are achieved when landowners cooperate and target cost-effective road repairs, however, a cooperative strategy can be counter-productive in some instances when cost-effectiveness is ignored. Simple models, such as the one developed here, have the potential to help managers make better choices about how to use limited resources.
China’s 13th Five-Year Plan, launched in March 2016, provides a sound policy platform for the protection of marine ecosystems and the restoration of capture fisheries within China’s exclusive economic zone. What distinguishes China among many other countries striving for marine fisheries reform is its size—accounting for almost one-fifth of global catch volume—and the unique cultural context of its economic and resource management. In this paper, we trace the history of Chinese government priorities, policies, and outcomes related to marine fisheries since the 1978 Economic Reform, and examine how the current leadership’s agenda for “ecological civilization” could successfully transform marine resource management in the coming years. We show how China, like many other countries, has experienced a decline in the average trophic level of its capture fisheries during the past few decades, and how its policy design, implementation, and enforcement have influenced the status of its wild fish stocks. To reverse the trend in declining fish stocks, the government is introducing a series of new programs for sustainable fisheries and aquaculture, with greater traceability and accountability in marine resource management and area controls on coastal development. As impressive as these new plans are on paper, we conclude that serious institutional reforms will be needed to achieve a true paradigm shift in marine fisheries management in China. In particular, we recommend new institutions for science-based fisheries management, secure fishing access, policy consistency across provinces, educational programs for fisheries managers, and increasing public access to scientific data.
The integrated multi-trophic aquaculture (i.e., IMTA) is a practice combining organisms with different trophic levels with the final purpose of transforming the continuous waste of food by targeting species into nutrient input for other non-target species. This practice very often involves filter feeders, such as bivalves, by the use of which bioenergetics budgets are strongly influenced by the quality and quantity of different foods. However, to date, scant information is available, to really understand the rebounds of food availability on the growth performances of these harvested biomasses in the natural environment. By choosing the mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis as a model, this study aims to (1) characterize the functional response of the species to define all parameters related to food intake strategies and (2) to investigate how responses change as a function of varying food sources. Laboratory procedures have been designed to evaluate the clearance rates (CR) and assimilation efficiencies (AE) of M. galloprovincialis with varying food concentrations, while different diets (i.e., seagrass, phytoplankton, and pellets) have been provided to investigate how differently they reach saturation. Results show that in the presence of phytoplankton and seagrass as food sources, the feeding strategies of M. galloprovincialis follow a II-type Holling's curve, while it shows a I-type Holling's curve when pellet food is provided. Investigating the behavioural components of functional responses may improve our ability to predict where to place shellfish cultures, as it may be useful in the context of IMTA management and in addressing siting studies.