Scientia Marina, Vol 78, No S1 (2014)

A trophic indicators toolbox for implementing an ecosystem approach in data-poor fisheries: the Algerian and Bou-Ismail Bay examples

Karim Babouri
KMS Berkouka BP 19, Algeria

M. Grazia Pennino
Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD), France

José Maria Bellido
Instituto Español de Oceanografía, Centro Oceanográfico de Murcia - School of Biological Sciences, University of Aberdeen, Spain


Over the past decade, the Algerian government has undertaken several incentives financed by state subsidies, via a range of development plans for fishing activities. Although these have led to the growth and modernization of the fishing fleet and the creation of various jobs, this increased fishing pressure has not maximized production as anticipated. In fact, catch is decreasing, and there are clear signs of stock overexploitation for several species, particularly sardines, for which catches have fallen dramatically. This study analyses the impact of fishing from an ecosystem perspective, with a view to the implementation of ecosystem approach to fishery management (EAFM) at the level of Algerian fisheries. To this end, a series of trophic indicators are used. The analysis shows that ecosystems at both national level and in the Bou-Ismail Bay are excessively exploited, and are altered by overexploitation and probably eutrophication. This situation is demonstrated in particular by the decrease in the average trophic level of catch, which is synonymous with “Fishing Down Marine Food Webs” (FDMW).


trophic indicators; ecosystem approach to fisheries management; Algerian fisheries; data-poor fisheries; Bou-Ismail Bay

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