Journal Article

When control rules collide: a comparison of fisheries management reference points and IUCN criteria for assessing risk of extinction

Jake C. Rice and Èmilie Legacè

in ICES Journal of Marine Science

Published on behalf of ICES/CIEM

Volume 64, issue 4, pages 718-722
Published in print May 2007 | ISSN: 1054-3139
Published online March 2007 | e-ISSN: 1095-9289 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/icesjms/fsm011
When control rules collide: a comparison of fisheries management reference points and IUCN criteria for assessing risk of extinction

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Rice, J. C., and Legacè, È. 2007. When control rules collide: a comparison of fisheries management reference points and IUCN criteria for assessing risk of extinction. – ICES Journal of Marine Science, 64: 718–722.

The quantitative criteria used by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) to assess risk-of-extinction are compared with reference points used by ICES and other fisheries organizations for advising on fisheries management. Criteria based on numbers of individuals and geographic range appear to be in harmony with limit reference points and control rules used in fisheries management, with reference points indicating that fisheries should be closed well before there is any risk of extinction. However, there is huge potential for conflict between fisheries and risk-of-extinction approaches when considering the extent of population declines. Of 89 species examined, the decline criterion suggested a serious risk-of-extinction in 87%, whereas most of the stocks were still within a zone that allowed fisheries management reference points to indicate that exploitation could continue. Much of the conflict seems rooted in different types of tolerance to risk between the two disciplines. The conservation-biology community acknowledges a high tolerance for “false alarms”, to keep the probability of a “miss” very low, whereas tolerance in fisheries management is comparable for both types of error.

Keywords: fisheries; harvest control rules; reference points; risk of extinction; risk tolerance

Journal Article.  3875 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Environmental Science ; Marine and Estuarine Biology

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