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Fisheries

Going diving in the tropics? Don’t eat the reef fish!

Reducing tourist consumption of reef fish is critical for Palau’s ocean sustainability, finds a new Nippon Foundation-UBC Nereus Program study published today in Marine Policy.

While climate change is expected to lead to sharp declines in Palau’s reefs, the best tourism management strategy includes a more than 70 per cent reduction in reef fish consumption by visitors. These findings are highly relevant for sustainable development in small island developing states under climate change.

How polluted your tuna is depends on where it comes from

By Colin Thackray, Nereus Fellow at Harvard University

It’s fairly common knowledge that tuna is high in methylmercury, a neurotoxin that bioaccumulates in marine food webs. This means that methylmercury magnifies further up the food web – tuna eat smaller fish that eat even smaller fish or plankton — all of which could contain the contaminant.

Overfishing & overpopulation: Too many fishers chasing too few fish?

By Julia Mason, Nereus Program fellow at Stanford University

There’s a tendency among conservation scientists to attribute the world’s environmental crises to the growing global population. Fisheries science is no exception—the issue of overfishing is often condensed to one of “too many fishers chasing too few fish,” leading to inevitable fisheries declines.

Who is eating who? How climate change is modifying predator prey interactions

Climate change is expected to have many impacts on the oceans; one of them is where fish are located in the ocean. Ocean warming is expected to cause fish to shift to different locations that are cooler — generally toward the poles and into deeper waters. But not all fish are moving in the same directions and at the same speeds. This is changing what fish are eating and who are eating them.

Developing countries face decreases in both fisheries and agriculture production under climate change

The authors looked at how food production on land and in the sea will be threatened by climate change and what the future effects on biodiversity, livelihoods and food security will be. They adopted the human development index (HDI) — a global index of life expectancy, education and per capita income. They found that all of the low human development index countries will face declines in both agriculture and fisheries production by 2050.

Global change in the trophic functioning of marine food webs

The rapid development of fisheries in the 1950’s facilitated declines in predator biomass, overexploitation, collapse of fish stocks, and degradation of marine habitats. A new PLOS ONE paper investigates past changes in trophic functioning of marine ecosystems cause by human-induced changes in species assemblages by applying an ecosystem approach to fisheries.

Solutions to blue carbon emissions: Shrimp cultivation, mangrove deforestation and climate change in coastal Bangladesh

Bangladesh is a world leader in aquaculture production, ranking sixth after China, Indonesia, India, Vietnam, and the Philippines. Due to the nation’s favourable physical characteristics, Bangladesh is highly suitable for coastal aquaculture, especially the tiger shrimp sector. Shrimp culture has diversified livelihood opportunities for coastal communities, as over two million people are involved in fish farming, market, processing, and exporting.