Journal Article

Partial fishing mortality per fishing trip: a useful indicator of effective fishing effort in mixed demersal fisheries

Adriaan D. Rijnsdorp, Niels Daan and Willem Dekker

in ICES Journal of Marine Science

Published on behalf of ICES/CIEM

Volume 63, issue 3, pages 556-566
Published in print January 2006 | ISSN: 1054-3139
Published online January 2006 | e-ISSN: 1095-9289 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.icesjms.2005.10.003
Partial fishing mortality per fishing trip: a useful indicator of effective fishing effort in mixed demersal fisheries

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Effort management has been proposed as an alternative for quota management in mixed demersal fisheries. It requires a metric to estimate the fishing mortality imposed by a given quantity of nominal fishing effort. Here, we estimate the partial fishing mortality rate imposed by one unit of fishing effort (Fpue) during individual fishing trips and explore the usefulness of this indicator for managing North Sea beam trawlers >300 hp targeting sole (Solea solea) and plaice (Pleuronectes platessa). Fpue is positively related to vessel engine power, and increased annually by 2.8% (sole) and 1.6% (plaice). The positive trend was due to an increase in skipper skills and investment in auxiliary equipment, the replacement of old vessels by new ones and, to a lesser extent, to upgrade engines. The average Fpue imposed per day at sea by a 2000 hp beam trawler was estimated to be 1.0 × 10−5 (sole) and 0.6 × 10−5 (plaice), and it showed substantial seasonal and spatial variations. The Fpue of sole and plaice were negatively related in summer and showed no relationship in winter. The existence of predictive seasonal and spatial patterns in Fpue opens up the possibility of fine-tuning management by directed effort restrictions and uncoupling management of plaice and sole.

Keywords: beam trawl; catchability; effort management; fishing effort; fishing mortality; mixed fishery; plaice; sole; technology creep

Journal Article.  6290 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Environmental Science ; Marine and Estuarine Biology

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