Fish health and fisheries, implications for stock assessment and management: the Mediterranean example

Lloret, Josep; Faliex, Elisabeth; Shulman, Georgi E; Raga, Juan Antonio; Sasal, Pierre; Munoz, Marta; Casadevall, Margarida; Ahuir-Baraja, Ana Elena; Montero, Francisco E.; Repulles-Albelda, Aigües; Cardinale, Massimiliano; Rätz, Hans-Joachim GND; Vila, Silvia; Ferrer, D.

Although fish health may influence key population-level processes, particularly those dealing with natural mortality, reproduction, and growth, which, in turn, affect stock productivity, little emphasis has been placed on the links between fish health and the management of marine fisheries. This article addresses this gap and illustrates how knowledge of fish health could provide insight for marine fisheries biologists, stock assessment modelers, and managers. The study proposes ways in which the consideration of condition indicators (energy reserves) and parasitism improves stock assessment and fisheries management, especially in situations of data shortage when standard methods cannot be applied, as is the case in many Mediterranean fish stocks. This article focuses on seven case studies of different fish species from the Mediterranean and Black Seas. Overall, and although the relationship between fish health and productivity cannot always be found or quantified, the article emphasizes the importance of the physical health of exploited stocks, particularly during critical life periods of the fish (e.g., prior to spawning, migration, or in the early life stages), as an essential element of sustainable and profitable fisheries. On the basis of these results, stock assessment and fisheries management implications are discussed

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Lloret, Josep / Faliex, Elisabeth / Shulman, Georgi E / et al: Fish health and fisheries, implications for stock assessment and management: the Mediterranean example. 2012.

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