Limits...
Interactions between a Trawl fishery and spatial closures for biodiversity conservation in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, Australia.

Grech A, Coles R - PLoS ONE (2011)

Bottom Line: The past decade has seen the implementation of conservation and fisheries management strategies to reduce the impact of the ECOTF on the seabed and improve biodiversity conservation.The decline in effort as a result of fishing industry structural adjustment, increasing variable costs and business decisions of fishers is likely to continue a trend to fish only in the most productive areas.This will provide protection for most benthic habitats without any further legislative or management intervention.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Fisheries Queensland, Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation, Cairns, Queensland, Australia. alana.grech@jcu.edu.au

ABSTRACT

Background: The Queensland East Coast Otter Trawl Fishery (ECOTF) for penaeid shrimp fishes within Australia's Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (GBRWHA). The past decade has seen the implementation of conservation and fisheries management strategies to reduce the impact of the ECOTF on the seabed and improve biodiversity conservation. New information from electronic vessel location monitoring systems (VMS) provides an opportunity to review the interactions between the ECOTF and spatial closures for biodiversity conservation.

Methodology and results: We used fishing metrics and spatial information on the distribution of closures and modelled VMS data in a geographical information system (GIS) to assess change in effort of the trawl fishery from 2001-2009 and to quantify the exposure of 70 reef, non-reef and deep water bioregions to trawl fishing. The number of trawlers and the number of days fished almost halved between 2001 and 2009 and new spatial closures introduced in 2004 reduced the area zoned available for trawl fishing by 33%. However, we found that there was only a relatively minor change in the spatial footprint of the fishery as a result of new spatial closures. Non-reef bioregions benefited the most from new spatial closures followed by deep and reef bioregions.

Conclusions/significance: Although the catch of non target species remains an issue of concern for fisheries management, the small spatial footprint of the ECOTF relative to the size of the GBRWHA means that the impact on benthic habitats is likely to be negligible. The decline in effort as a result of fishing industry structural adjustment, increasing variable costs and business decisions of fishers is likely to continue a trend to fish only in the most productive areas. This will provide protection for most benthic habitats without any further legislative or management intervention.

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Area zoned available and unavailable to trawling before and after new zoning was introduced in 2004.Almost 51% of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (177,732 km2; GBRWHA) was zoned available to trawl fishing prior to the introduction of new spatial closures in 2004. New zoning decreased the amount of area zoned available to trawl fishing by 59,244 km2, and 34% (118,488 km2) of the GBRWHA is currently zoned available to trawl fishing.
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pone-0021094-g002: Area zoned available and unavailable to trawling before and after new zoning was introduced in 2004.Almost 51% of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (177,732 km2; GBRWHA) was zoned available to trawl fishing prior to the introduction of new spatial closures in 2004. New zoning decreased the amount of area zoned available to trawl fishing by 59,244 km2, and 34% (118,488 km2) of the GBRWHA is currently zoned available to trawl fishing.

Mentions: We found that 51% of the GBRWHA (177,732 km2) was zoned available to trawl fishing prior to the introduction of new spatial closures in 2004 (Figure 2). New zoning decreased the amount of area zoned available to trawl fishing by 59,244 km2, and 34% (118,488 km2) of the GBRWHA is currently zoned available to trawl fishing (Figure 2).


Interactions between a Trawl fishery and spatial closures for biodiversity conservation in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, Australia.

Grech A, Coles R - PLoS ONE (2011)

Area zoned available and unavailable to trawling before and after new zoning was introduced in 2004.Almost 51% of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (177,732 km2; GBRWHA) was zoned available to trawl fishing prior to the introduction of new spatial closures in 2004. New zoning decreased the amount of area zoned available to trawl fishing by 59,244 km2, and 34% (118,488 km2) of the GBRWHA is currently zoned available to trawl fishing.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3113906&req=5

pone-0021094-g002: Area zoned available and unavailable to trawling before and after new zoning was introduced in 2004.Almost 51% of the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (177,732 km2; GBRWHA) was zoned available to trawl fishing prior to the introduction of new spatial closures in 2004. New zoning decreased the amount of area zoned available to trawl fishing by 59,244 km2, and 34% (118,488 km2) of the GBRWHA is currently zoned available to trawl fishing.
Mentions: We found that 51% of the GBRWHA (177,732 km2) was zoned available to trawl fishing prior to the introduction of new spatial closures in 2004 (Figure 2). New zoning decreased the amount of area zoned available to trawl fishing by 59,244 km2, and 34% (118,488 km2) of the GBRWHA is currently zoned available to trawl fishing (Figure 2).

Bottom Line: The past decade has seen the implementation of conservation and fisheries management strategies to reduce the impact of the ECOTF on the seabed and improve biodiversity conservation.The decline in effort as a result of fishing industry structural adjustment, increasing variable costs and business decisions of fishers is likely to continue a trend to fish only in the most productive areas.This will provide protection for most benthic habitats without any further legislative or management intervention.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Fisheries Queensland, Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation, Cairns, Queensland, Australia. alana.grech@jcu.edu.au

ABSTRACT

Background: The Queensland East Coast Otter Trawl Fishery (ECOTF) for penaeid shrimp fishes within Australia's Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (GBRWHA). The past decade has seen the implementation of conservation and fisheries management strategies to reduce the impact of the ECOTF on the seabed and improve biodiversity conservation. New information from electronic vessel location monitoring systems (VMS) provides an opportunity to review the interactions between the ECOTF and spatial closures for biodiversity conservation.

Methodology and results: We used fishing metrics and spatial information on the distribution of closures and modelled VMS data in a geographical information system (GIS) to assess change in effort of the trawl fishery from 2001-2009 and to quantify the exposure of 70 reef, non-reef and deep water bioregions to trawl fishing. The number of trawlers and the number of days fished almost halved between 2001 and 2009 and new spatial closures introduced in 2004 reduced the area zoned available for trawl fishing by 33%. However, we found that there was only a relatively minor change in the spatial footprint of the fishery as a result of new spatial closures. Non-reef bioregions benefited the most from new spatial closures followed by deep and reef bioregions.

Conclusions/significance: Although the catch of non target species remains an issue of concern for fisheries management, the small spatial footprint of the ECOTF relative to the size of the GBRWHA means that the impact on benthic habitats is likely to be negligible. The decline in effort as a result of fishing industry structural adjustment, increasing variable costs and business decisions of fishers is likely to continue a trend to fish only in the most productive areas. This will provide protection for most benthic habitats without any further legislative or management intervention.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus