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Global marine yield halved as fishing intensity redoubles


Watson, RA and Cheung, WWL and Anticamara, JA and Sumaila, RU and Zeller, D and Pauly, D, Global marine yield halved as fishing intensity redoubles, Fish and Fisheries, 14, (4) pp. 493-503. ISSN 1467-2960 (2012) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2012 John Wiley & Sons Ltd

DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1467-2979.2012.00483.x


There is widespread concern and debate about the state of global marine resources and the ecosystems supporting them, notably global fisheries, as catches now generally stagnate or decline. Many fisheries are not assessed by standard stock assessment methods including many in the world's most biodiverse areas. Though simpler methods using widely available catch data are available, these are often discounted largely because data on fishing effort that contributed to the changes in catches are mostly not considered. We analyse spatial and temporal patterns of global fishing effort and its relationship with catch to assess the status of the world's fisheries. The study reveals that fleets now fish all of the world's oceans and have increased in power by an average of 10-fold (25-fold for Asia) since the 1950s. Significantly, for the equivalent fishing power expended, landings from global fisheries are now half what they were a half-century ago, indicating profound changes to supporting marine environments. This study provides another dimension to understand the global status of fisheries. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Fishing effort; Fishing intensity; Spatial expansion; Yield
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Fisheries sciences
Research Field:Aquaculture and fisheries stock assessment
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Fisheries - wild caught
Objective Field:Wild caught fin fish (excl. tuna)
UTAS Author:Watson, RA (Professor Reginald Watson)
ID Code:82779
Year Published:2012
Web of Science® Times Cited:158
Deposited By:Sustainable Marine Research Collaboration
Deposited On:2013-02-18
Last Modified:2017-11-03

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