Is the Dutch shrimp fishery sustainable?

H.C. Welleman, N. Daan

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    12 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The fishery of the brown shrimp (Crangon crangon LINNEAUS 1758) is a widespread human activity in the coastal zone. Yet management of this fishery has never been implemented. The question is raised whether an uncontrolled fishery is sustainable or the conceivable ecological stress results in recruitment overfishing. The time series of shrimp abundance, commercial landings per unit of effort and the shrimp consumption by cod and whiting provide a perspective for nature conservation and fishery management. The results indicate that predation mortality by only two of the predator species present in the coastal areas exceeds the landings by a factor 2 to 20, and that, despite large annual fluctuations in shrimp consumption, the shrimp stock has remained remarkably stable over 30 years. Moreover, predators exploit juvenile shrimp, while the fishery exploits adult shrimp after the predators have levied their toll. The international catch of approx. 26,000 tonnes is of the same order of magnitude as the consumption of one natural predator. Thus, there is no indication that the shrimp stock is fished at unsustainable levels.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)321-328
    JournalSenckenbergiana Maritima
    Volume31
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2001

    Keywords

    • Shrimp fishery
    • crangon crangon
    • sustainability
    • long-term changes

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