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Ignore fishers' knowledge and miss the boat
Johannes, R.E.; Freeman, M.M.R.; Hamilton, R.J. (2000). Ignore fishers' knowledge and miss the boat. Fish Fish. 1: 257-271
In: Fish & Fisheries. Blackwell Science: Oxford. ISSN 1467-2960, more
Peer reviewed article

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Keywords
    Fisheries management; Methodology; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Johannes, R.E.
  • Freeman, M.M.R.
  • Hamilton, R.J.

Abstract
    We describe five examples of how, by ignoring fishers’ ecological knowledge (FEK), marine researchers and resource managers may put fishery resources at risk, or unnecessarily compromise the welfare of resource users. Fishers can provide critical information on such things as interannual, seasonal, lunar, diel, tide-related and habitat-related differences in behaviour and abundance of target species, and on how these influence fishing strategies. Where long-term data sets are unavailable, older fishers are also often the only source of information on historical changes in local marine stocks and in marine environmental conditions. FEK can thus help improve management of target stocks and rebuild marine ecosystems. It can play important roles in the siting of marine protected areas and in environmental impact assessment. The fact that studying FEK does not meet criteria for acceptable research advanced by some marine biologists highlights the inadequacy of those criteria.

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