Fisheries do not occur in isolation with regulations focused on one fishery or species impacting another. Traditional single stock assessments do not account for the predator prey interactions between species, while other human activities and climatic drivers can have impacts on stock recruitment and health. In the Irish Sea, the life cycle and abundance of important commercial fish and shellfish species is closely coupled to the biological and physical environment, such as the annual development of seasonal stratification and sea temperature. Meanwhile socio-economic drivers such as quota availability, market values, fuel and labour costs influence the activities of the fishery. The traditional single stock approach to fisheries management therefore has its limitations when trying to manage resources and activities in a complex and highly integrated system.
Ecosystem based fisheries management
Through the activities and research of AFBI marine programmes we are improving our understanding of how the Irish Sea ecosystem is structured and functions; and how changes in ecosystem state may influence the sustainability of the natural resources and services it provides. This work is making a valuable contribution to the management of Irish Sea fisheries and our transition towards an ecosystem based approach to fisheries management.
The link below will take you to the European Fisheries Funded Project: Ecosystem Based Management of Irish Fisheries & other resources. There are 4 work package reports.