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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]ebd.csic.es: Marco et al (2020) Sea turtle bycatch by different types of fisheries in southern Spain. Basic and Applied Herpetology https://doi.org/10.11160/bah.187


http://ojs.herpetologica.org/index.php/bah/article/view/187
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Rewilding complex ecosystems

Rewilding complex ecosystems

Rapid global change is creating fundamental challenges for the persistence of natural ecosystems and their biodiversity. Conservation efforts aimed at the protection of landscapes have had mixed success, and there is an increasing awareness that the long-term protection of biodiversity requires inclusion of flexible restoration along with protection. Rewilding is one such approach that has been both promoted and criticized in recent years. Proponents emphasize the potential of rewilding to tap opportunities for restoration while creating benefits for both ecosystems and societies. Critics discuss the lack of a consistent definition of rewilding and insufficient knowledge about its potential outcomes. Other criticisms arise from the mistaken notion that rewilding actions are planned without considering societal acceptability and benefits. This study presents a framework for rewilding actions that can serve as a guideline for researchers and managers. The framework is applicable to a variety of rewilding approaches, ranging from passive to trophic rewilding, and aims to promote beneficial interactions between society and nature. The concept of rewilding has evolved from its initial emphasis on protecting large, connected areas for large carnivore conservation to a process-oriented, dynamic approach. On the basis of concepts from resilience and complexity theory of social-ecological systems, we identify trophic complexity, stochastic disturbances, and dispersal as three critical components of natural ecosystem dynamics. We propose that the restoration of these processes, and their interactions, can lead to increased self-sustainability of ecosystems and should be at the core of rewilding actions. Building on these concepts, we develop a framework to design and evaluate rewilding plans. Alongside ecological restoration goals, our framework emphasizes people's perceptions and experiences of wildness and the regulating and material contributions from restoring nature. These societal aspects are important outcomes and may be critical factors for the success of rewilding initiatives (see the figure). We further identify current societal constraints on rewilding and suggest actions to mitigate them. The concept of rewilding challenges us to rethink the way we manage nature and to broaden our vision about how nature will respond to changes that society brings, both intentionally and unintentionally. The effects of rewilding actions will be specific to each ecosystem, and thus a deep understanding of the processes that shape ecosystems is critical to anticipate these effects and to take appropriate management actions. In addition, the decision of whether a rewilding approach is desirable should consider stakeholders' needs and expectations. To this end, structured restoration planning—based on participatory processes involving researchers, managers, and stakeholders—that includes monitoring and adaptive management can be used. With the recent designation of 2021–2030 as the "decade of ecosystem restoration" by the United Nations General Assembly, policy- and decision-makers could push rewilding topics to the forefront of discussions about how to reach post-2020 biodiversity goals. informacion[at]ebd.csic.es Perino et al (2019) Rewilding complex ecosystems. Science DOI: 10.1126/science.aav5570

https://science.sciencemag.org/content/364/6438/eaav5570


https://science.sciencemag.org/content/364/6438/eaav5570