Keep it simple: three indicators to deal with overfishing

Froese, Rainer (2004) Keep it simple: three indicators to deal with overfishing Fish and Fisheries, 5 (1). pp. 86-91. DOI 10.1111/j.1467-2979.2004.00144.x.

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Three simple fisheries indicators are presented: (i) percentage of mature fish in catch, with 100% as target; (ii) percent of specimens with optimum length in catch, with 100% as target; and (iii) percentage of ‘mega-spawners‘ in catch, with 0% as target, and 30–40% as representative of reasonable stock structure if no upper size limit exists. Application of these indicators to stocks of Gadus morhua, Sardinella aurita and Epinephelus aeneus demonstrate their usefulness. It is argued that such simple indicators have the potential to allow more stakeholders such as fishers, fish dealers, supermarket managers, consumers and politicians to participate in fisheries management and eventually hold and reverse the global pattern of convenience overfishing, which is defined here as deliberate overfishing sanctioned by official bodies who find it more convenient to risk eventual collapse of fish stocks than to risk social and political conflicts.

Document Type: Article
Keywords: fisheries indicators, length at first maturity, longevity, optimum length, overfishing, sustainable fishing
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB3 Marine Ecology > FB3-EV Evolutionary Ecology of Marine Fishes
Refereed: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.1111/j.1467-2979.2004.00144.x
ISSN: 1467-2960
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2008 16:52
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2017 14:26

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