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Small-scale fisheries present challenges to management due to fishers' dependency on resources and the adaptability of management systems.
We compared social-ecological processes in the sea cucumber fisheries of Zanzibar and Mayotte, Western Indian Ocean, to better understand the reasons for resource conservation or collapse. Commercial value of wild stocks was at least 30 times higher in Mayotte than in Zanzibar owing to lower fishing pressure. Zanzibar fishers were financially reliant on the fishery and increased fishing effort as stocks declined. This behavioral response occurred without adaptive management and reinforced an unsustainable fishery. In contrast, resource managers in Mayotte adapted to changing fishing effort and stock abundance by implementing a precautionary fishery closure before crossing critical thresholds.
Fishery closure may be a necessary measure in small-scale fisheries to preserve vulnerable resources until reliable management systems are devised. Our comparison highlighted four poignant lessons for managing small-scale fisheries: (1) diagnose the fishery regularly, (2) enable an adaptive management system, (3) constrain exploitation within ecological limits, and (4) share management responsibility.
Research news | 2018-11-17
Study reveals deeply contrasting realities for farmers in South Africa
Research news | 2018-11-16
New report projects area of habitat larger than New Zealand could be lost to urbanization over next 20 years
Research news | 2018-11-15
The fifth in a series of seven "deep dives" looking into the connections between resilience and development
Research news | 2018-11-13
First assessment of planetary boundaries for antibiotic and pesticide resistance shows several are already crossed
Educational news | 2018-11-13
Centre partners with other insitutions at Stockholm University to host a PhD/postdoc course in global and environmental governace
Research news | 2018-11-09
The perception of cognition and other related terms easily get misunderstood in scientific processes, leading to frustration, communication breakdown and a collaboration impasse