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Different but not opposed: Perceptions between fishing sectors on the status and management of a crab fishery

Obregón, C., Tweedley, J.R.ORCID: 0000-0002-2749-1060, Loneragan, N.R. and Hughes, M.ORCID: 0000-0002-9810-1891 (2019) Different but not opposed: Perceptions between fishing sectors on the status and management of a crab fishery. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 77 (6). pp. 2354-2368.

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Fisher perceptions are a useful source of information that allows changes in stocks to be detected quickly and indicate the social acceptability of different management regulations. Yet traditionally, such information is rarely employed when developing management approaches. Face-to-face interviews were used to elicit recreational and commercial fishers’ perceptions of a crab (Portunus armatus) fishery in three south-western Australian estuaries. Differences in the perceived changes in the average size of crabs and fishing effort, reported concerns and supported solutions were detected among the recreational fishers utilizing the three estuaries and between recreational and commercial fishers in the Peel-Harvey Estuary. However, some common views were expressed by recreational and commercial fishers, with both sectors stating concerns over recreational fisher compliance and increased fishing and environmental pressures. While both sectors believed that reducing fishing and increasing compliance would benefit crab stocks, the mechanisms for achieving this differed. Recreational fishers favoured increasing the length of the seasonal closure, while commercial fishers favoured the introduction of a recreational shore-based fishing licence. These findings suggest that sector- and estuary-specific management rules may better facilitate the amelioration of pressures affecting individual estuaries and could contribute towards a more socially and biologically sustainable fishery.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Environmental and Conservation Sciences
Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Ecosystems
Harry Butler Institute
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Copyright: © International Council for the Exploration of the Sea 2019
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