Inshore fisheries can have a significant impact on coastal fish and habitats, interacting with other fishing fleets and uses of the marine environment. Hence, the effective management of inshore fisheries is important for delivery of European policy such as the Marine Strategy Framework Directive and requires a holistic ecosystem-based approach. However, the evidence needed to underpin management of these fisheries is often limited and difficult to collect. This is due to the large numbers of widely-distributed small fishing vessels exploiting highly mixed fisheries using a variety of gear types.
Recreational fisheries also operate inshore both from the shore and boats, and can represent a significant component of fishing mortality. Monitoring challenges mean that significant components of mortality are not well described, which may affect our ability to manage fisheries to achieve conservation targets.
Inshore fisheries generally span regions, so regional coordination of countries is important for effective delivery of multiannual plans, discard plans, and conservation measures. It is also needed to define monitoring programmes that deliver the evidence to underpin regional management. In response, the EU has funded a number of projects to strengthen regional coordination that will report over the next year (e.g. FishPI).
There are also significant methodological challenges in providing an acceptable assessment for inshore fisheries. Different sectors often want different management outcomes or objectives, bringing them into conflict before any management action is identified. As a result, participatory approaches are needed to develop management objectives. The temporal and spatial extent of data is generally limited, so novel methods for reconstruction of historical data for stock assessments are required.
Finally, management measures for inshore fisheries may drive the development of different modelling approaches (e.g. spatial IBMs). Many studies are available on the social benefits and economic impact of inshore fisheries, but these are rarely measured on the same scales, and individual sectors can be very important to local coastal economies. Hence, measures that take into account social and economic dimensions within the assessment are required to optimize allocation decisions between sectors. Balancing the competing demand of biological sustainability, economic value, and social benefits is essential to maximize the utility of fisheries, but is very difficult to achieve.
The main aim of this session is to present state-of-the-art methods that address challenges in inshore fisheries management and identify holistic management approaches. Specifically this will focus on data collection, assessment of data quality, regional coordination, reconstruction of missing data, and cross-sectoral co-management that accounts for social benefits, economic value, and biological sustainability. Clearly, an integrated cross-disciplinary approach is needed, so papers are invited from economists, social and biological scientists, fisheries managers, and stakeholders.
Papers are welcome on:
Key data and methodological gaps will be highlighted and potential methods identified to address these key issues during the discussion session.