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Mobility, Expansion and Management of a Multi-Species Scuba Diving Fishery in East Africa
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Systems Ecology.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Systems Ecology. Stockholm University, Stockholm Resilience Centre.
Stockholm University, Stockholm Resilience Centre.
2012 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 7, no 4, e35504- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Scuba diving fishing, predominantly targeting sea cucumbers, has been documented to occur in an uncontrolled manner in the Western Indian Ocean and in other tropical regions. Although this type of fishing generally indicates a destructive activity, little attention has been directed towards this category of fishery, a major knowledge gap and barrier to management. 

Methodology and Principal Findings: With the aim to capture geographic scales, fishing processes and social aspects the scuba diving fishery that operate out of Zanzibar was studied using interviews, discussions, participant observations and catch monitoring. The diving fishery was resilient to resource declines and had expanded to new species, new depths and new fishing grounds, sometimes operating approximately 250 km away from Zanzibar at depths down to 50 meters, as a result of depleted easy-access stock. The diving operations were embedded in a regional and global trade network, and its actors operated in a roving manner on multiple spatial levels, taking advantage of unfair patron-client relationships and of the insufficient management in Zanzibar. Conclusions and

Significance: This study illustrates that roving dynamics in fisheries, which have been predominantly addressed on a global scale, also take place at a considerably smaller spatial scale. Importantly, while proposed management of the sea cucumber fishery is often generic to a simplified fishery situation, this study illustrates a multifaceted fishery with diverse management requirements. The documented spatial scales and processes in the scuba diving fishery emphasize the need for increased regional governance partnerships to implement management that fit the spatial scales and processes of the operation. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 7, no 4, e35504- p.
National Category
Ecology
Research subject
Marine Ecotoxicology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-75520DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0035504ISI: 000305347400055OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-75520DiVA: diva2:516980
Note

Author count: 3;

Available from: 2012-04-20 Created: 2012-04-20 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Managing sea cucumber fisheries and aquaculture: Studies of social-ecological systems in the Western Indian Ocean
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Managing sea cucumber fisheries and aquaculture: Studies of social-ecological systems in the Western Indian Ocean
2012 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Collecting sea cucumbers to supply the high value Chinese dried seafood market is a livelihood activity available to many people in the Western Indian Ocean (WIO), making it an important part of local economies. These fisheries are generally not successfully managed and tropical sea cucumber fisheries show continuing signs of decline. This thesis takes a social-ecological systems approach to guide better management of sea cucumber fisheries and aquaculture in the WIO. Papers 1 and 2 analyse the fishery situation in Zanzibar and find that in the absence of effective management institutions and income alternatives among fishers, leading to dependence, there are unsustainable expanding processes. Paper 3 compares the unmanaged fishery in Zanzibar to the highly controlled situation in Mayotte. In Mayotte, a protection effect is evident and the commercial value of stocks is significantly higher than in Zanzibar. The analysis of the situation in Mayotte demonstrates the importance of matching the fishery – management temporal scales through prepared and adaptive management to avoid processes that reinforce unsustainable expansion. Paper 4 analyses sea cucumber community spatial distribution patterns at a coastal seascape-scale in Mayotte establishing baseline patterns of habitat utilization and abundance, which can be used as reference in management. Paper 5 reviews the potential for sea cucumber aquaculture in the WIO. The review illustrates that this activity, which is currently gaining momentum, does so based on inflated promises and with significant social-ecological risks. Emphasis for improvements is, in this thesis, placed on the importance of prepared and adaptive institutions to govern and control expanding processes of the fishery. These institutional features may be achieved by increasing the level of knowledge and participation in governance and by integration of sea cucumber resources management into higher-level policy initiatives.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Systems Ecology, Stockholm University, 2012. 43 p.
Keyword
Sea cucumbers, Bêche-de-mer, Trepang, Echinoderms, Fisheries, Aquaculture, Governance, Trade, Seafood, Tropical seascape, Zanzibar, Mayotte, Western Indian Ocean
National Category
Ecology
Research subject
Marine Ecotoxicology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-75515 (URN)978-91-7447-515-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
2012-06-01, Nordenskiöldsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 12, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following paper was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 3: Manuscript.

Available from: 2012-05-10 Created: 2012-04-20 Last updated: 2012-10-08Bibliographically approved

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