Inshore Fisheries, Marine Wildlife Conservation and an Ecosystem Based Approach to Management

  • David Symes
Part of the Reviews: Methods and Technologies in Fish Biology and Fisheries book series (REME, volume 2)


The inshore waters fringing the coastlines of Europe contain some of the most highly diverse marine ecosystems, in which man has evolved as the dominant species — a dynamic and disruptive predator. Concern has been growing for the quality of the marine environment and, in line with the ethos of the Biodiversity Convention (1992), the political rhetoric is switching its emphasis away from problems of fish stock sustainability per se to the wider and much more complex issues of ecosystem management and endorsement of the precautionary principle. As the longest established, most widespread and possibly most pervasive of human activities in these inshore waters, fishing has come under increasingly close scrutiny. Although initial attention was focused on the highly damaging effects of pollution in areas like the North Sea, the intensification of fishing effort, the development of new and more efficient technologies which seek to maintain yields even in the face of declining fish stocks, and the growth of industrialised forms of fishing have prompted the realisation that a good part of the ecological change is due to the persistence of fishing activity. Indeed, there is a general presumption that most, if not all, forms of fishing activity damage the marine ecosystem.


Fishery Management Precautionary Principle Fishing Activity Ecosystem Approach Harbour Porpoise 
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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2001

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  • David Symes

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