[MARMAM] Dolphins and coastal fisheries within a marine protected area: mismatch between dolphin occurrence and reported depredation

Giovanni Bearzi giovanni.bearzi at gmail.com
Mon Apr 4 21:16:19 PDT 2011


The following article has become available online:

Dolphins and coastal fisheries within a marine protected area: mismatch
between dolphin occurrence and reported depredation

Giovanni Bearzi, Silvia Bonizzoni, Joan Gonzalvo

Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems (2011)
DOI: 10.1002/aqc.1179

ABSTRACT
1. Dolphins are often blamed for reducing fisheries catches and may be
killed in retaliation. Depredation of fishing gear in coastal Mediterranean
waters is normally caused by bottlenose dolphins. Economic impact, however,
may be modest even within areas of reportedly acute conflict.
2. Boat surveys and interviews were conducted to investigate dolphin
occurrence and interactions with fisheries within the 167 km2 Porto Cesareo
Marine Protected Area (MPA) in southern Italy. Based on 69 interviews with
fishermen using bottom-set trammel and gill nets, there was reportedly a
high occurrence of depredation by bottlenose dolphins. Depredation was
reported by 92% of the fishermen operating in or near the MPA, and 67% of
them claimed an economic cost in excess of €1000 per year, with a mean
reported cost of €2561: a higher impact than in other Mediterranean studies.
3. According to local fishermen, dolphin occurrence and depredation peaked
in spring and autumn, coincident with the study's surveys at sea. Dedicated
visual surveys totalling 1255 km of effort, however, resulted in no
encounters with cetaceans. Information from interviews and boat surveys was
therefore contradictory, suggesting that reports of acute depredation do not
imply a constant presence of dolphins within the MPA.
4. While depredation in the MPA might be caused by wide-ranging dolphins or
incursions occurring overnight, damage may well be overestimated or
over-reported. As local fishermen had previously benefited from subsidies,
interviews made during this study could be perceived by some as an
opportunity to influence future decision-making regarding monetary
compensation for the impact of depredation.
5. Evidence from interviews also indicated that species and factors other
than dolphins were responsible for part of the damage.

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A pdf copy can be obtained from the journal's web site (subscribers only):

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/aqc.1179/abstract
<http://tinyurl.com/4hmzyvb>

or from me:

giovanni.bearzi at gmail.com


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Giovanni Bearzi, Ph.D.
http://www.dolphinbiology.org/staff/giovanni_bearzi.htm


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