Joint impact of fishing and ecotourism in the Sundarbans: a theoretical perspective

Abstract

Using a generalist predator–prey system, we describe a theoretical aspect of economic and sustainability issues in the context of a complex ecosystem of Sundarbans coastal area, with a larger part located in Bangladesh and a smaller part in India. Predator species are considered only for the purpose of ecotourism and prey species are subject to fishing only. First we have studied the relevance of tourist entrance fee on total income gained from ecotourism and fishing. It is found that the total rent increases with the increase of entrance fee up to a certain threshold and then it decreases. Next the impact of fishing effort is studied on maximizing the total rent, and similar qualitative behavior is found as in the case of tourist entrance fee. Following this, the total rent is optimized in respect to both tourist entrance fee and fishing effort with three different level of tourists sensitivity on predator population. Result show that maximum total rent is always higher if more importance is given to ecotourism than fishing. Finally, MSY policy and its consequences on ecotourism and fishing are also studied. It is observed that MSY approach is a sustainable management policy to protect both the species even if the ecotourism is implemented along with fishing. This model can be used to determine the optimal choice of tourist entrance fee and fishing effort when the real data are available for the Sundarbans.

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Funding

The research of T.K. Kar is supported by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research(CSIR), NO.25(0300)/19/EMR-II. The research of K. Pujaru is financed by Department of Science and Technology, INSPIRE, Government of India (No. DST/INSPIRE Fellowship/2017/IF170378, dated: 12th September, 2017).

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Correspondence to T. K. Kar.

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Kar, T.K., Das, D. & Pujaru, K. Joint impact of fishing and ecotourism in the Sundarbans: a theoretical perspective. Int. J. Dynam. Control 8, 792–804 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40435-019-00597-8

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Keywords

  • Sundarbans
  • Predator prey
  • Fisheries
  • Harvesting
  • Ecotourism
  • Maximum sustainable yield