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Ecological effects of trawling fisheries on the eastern Australian continental shelf: a modelling study


Savina, M and Forrest, RE and Fulton, EA and Condie, SA, Ecological effects of trawling fisheries on the eastern Australian continental shelf: a modelling study, Marine and Freshwater Research, 64, (11) pp. 1068-1086. ISSN 1323-1650 (2013) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2013 CSIRO

DOI: doi:10.1071/MF12361


The New South Wales Offshore Trawl Fishery began to expand in 1976, following a large exploratory trawl survey carried out on the fishing grounds of the upper continental slope. This survey was repeated 20 years later with the same vessel and using similar protocols. Comparison of the survey results suggested that the overall fish biomass in the survey area had substantially decreased after 20 years. We have implemented an ecosystem model using the Atlantis framework to (1) emulate the evolution of the shelf ecosystems from 1976 to 1996 and (2) explore the effects of alternative fishing pressures on those ecosystems. We have been able to emulate the observed decline of most of the commercial groups of fish species in the Offshore Trawl Fishery, including sharks, and our results confirmed that fishing pressure was the most important cause of these observed changes. Fourteen fishing scenarios highlight the competing nature of some of the ecosystem-based sustainable fishing objectives.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Atlantis, ecosystem-based fisheries management, ecosystem modelling, functional biodiversity, New South Wales, offshore trawl fishery
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Fisheries sciences
Research Field:Fisheries management
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Terrestrial systems and management
Objective Field:Assessment and management of terrestrial ecosystems
UTAS Author:Fulton, EA (Dr Elizabeth Fulton)
ID Code:119560
Year Published:2013
Web of Science® Times Cited:11
Deposited By:Fisheries and Aquaculture
Deposited On:2017-08-02
Last Modified:2017-10-16

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