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Impact of fisheries on sea turtles

The bycatch of sea turtles by industrial fisheries is receiving an increasing attention in recent years due to the high impact it causes on these endangered species. This issue was evaluated in southern Spain waters that harbors an important feeding ground of loggerhead and leatherback turtles, including the endangered Eastern Atlantic loggerhead population. To quantify the impact that different fisheries represents to sea turtles, 272 fishermen answered to detailed illustrated questionnaires in all the main ports of Andalusia and Murcia (Spain) during 2014. This study has updated the knowledge of turtle bycatch in the southwestern Mediterranean revealing a widespread impact of fisheries on sea turtles. Fishermen recognized an annual catch of 2.3 turtles per boat. Considering the census of industrial fishing boats in the study area (1182), more than 2840 sea turtles could be bycaught per year in the study area. Most of captures (96.2%) were produced during the summer. These results suggest a severe impact of most of legal fisheries (surface longline, pursue seine, trawling and small scale fisheries) on loggerhead feeding grounds in the southwestern Mediterranean. Fishermen suggests that drift fishing conducted by foreign or illegal fishermen and almadrabas are also causing a significant bycatch of turtles. Several measures such as reviewing compliance of current fishing and environmental regulations, modifying turtle technics to reduce turtle bycatch (e.g. reduction of the use of squid as bait and disposal of hooks deeper in the water column), facilitating the rescue and handle of wound turtles and their transport to the port for recovery, and recognizing the efforts of anglers to perform a more sustainable fishing, are recommended to mitigate this impact. informacion[at] Marco et al (2020) Sea turtle bycatch by different types of fisheries in southern Spain. Basic and Applied Herpetology
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Development of European longterm ecosystem research infrastructures

Development of European longterm ecosystem research infrastructures

Distributed environmental research infrastructures are important to support assessments of the effects of global change on landscapes, ecosystems and society. These infrastructures need to provide continuity to address longterm change, yet be flexible enough to respond to rapid societal and technological developments that modify research priorities. This horizon scanning exercise was done to identify and prioritize emerging research questions for the future development of ecosystem and socio-ecological research infrastructures in Europe. Twenty research questions covered topics related to ecosystem structures and processes, the impacts of anthropogenic drivers on ecosystems, ecosystem services and socio-ecological systems, and methods and research infrastructures. Several key priorities for the development of research infrastructures emerged. Addressing complex environmental issues requires the adoption of a whole-system approach, achieved through integration of biotic, abiotic and socio-economic measurements. Interoperability among different research infrastructures needs to be improved by developing standard measurements, harmonizing methods, and establishing capacities and tools for data integration, processing, storage and analysis. Future research infrastructures should support a range of methodological approaches including observation, experiments and modelling. They should also have flexibility to respond to new requirements, for example by adjusting the spatiotemporal design of measurements. When new methods are introduced, compatibility with important longterm data series must be ensured. Finally, indicators, tools, and transdisciplinary approaches to identify, quantify and value ecosystem services across spatial scales and domains need to be advanced. In summary, to address complex scientific issues sophisticated research infrastructures are required that operate in the longterm, and cover large spatial scales as well as multiple dimensions of ecosystems and socioecological systems. The combined network of LTER sites, LTSER platforms and Critical Zones Observatories offers great potential as a distributed infrastructure. LTSER platforms should be developed into pilot areas that will allow researchers, managers and decision makers to make evidence-based choices which centre on finding the balance between sustaining landscapes and the demands placed upon them by different stakeholders. informacion[at] Musche et al (2019) Research questions to facilitate the future development of European longterm ecosystem research infrastructures: A horizon scanning exercise. J Environ Management DOI 10.1016/j.jenvman.2019.109479