The Next Generation of Ecosystem Based Fishery Management

Scientists and managers have long recognized that fisheries management should consider interconnections between fishing, fished species, humans, and the well-being of the larger marine environment. Yet, the path to implementation of ecosystem-based fisheries management (EBFM) remains murky. The Lenfest Fishery Ecosystem Task Force is undertaking an effort to create a practical blueprint for EBFM in the U.S.  In particular, we want to outline the components of effective Fishery Ecosystem Plans (FEPs) using existing data, policy, and management structures. FEPs typically encompass and add information to traditional fishery management plans and are intended as an early step toward EBFM. A review of FEPs reveals that plans differ substantially, and there is no standard for what they should contain.  Operationalizing EBFM will thus require a scientific dialogue that builds the concept of Fisheries Ecosystem Plans. In this symposium, we will present practical methods and success stories that incorporate the following into management action or policy change: (1)Trophic interactions; (2) Bycatch and technical interactions; (3) Habitat; (4) Environmental and oceanographic factors; (5) Human well-being and social and economic equity; and, (6)Trade-off analysis.
Tim Essington, Phillip S. Levin, Kristin N. Marshall and Laura Koehn
Laura Koehn and Kristin N. Marshall
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