Scientia Marina, Vol 82, No S1 (2018)

Modelling the effects of more selective trawl nets on the productivity of European hake (Merluccius merluccius) and deep-water rose shrimp (Parapenaeus longirostris) stocks in the Strait of Sicily


https://doi.org/10.3989/scimar.04752.03A

Sergio Vitale
Istituto per le Risorse Biologiche e le Biotecnologie Marine (IRBIM), Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), Italy
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0001-6063-4126

Marco Enea
Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche, Aziendali e Statistiche, University of Palermo, Italy
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0002-9281-5746

Giacomo Milisenda
Stazione Zoologica Anton Dohrn, Lungomare Cristoforo Colombo (ex complesso Roosevelt), Italy
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0003-1334-9749

Vita Gancitano
Istituto per le Risorse Biologiche e le Biotecnologie Marine (IRBIM), Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), Italy
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0001-9623-6621

Michele Luca Geraci
Istituto per le Risorse Biologiche e le Biotecnologie Marine (IRBIM), Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), Italy
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0002-3143-4659

Fabio Falsone
Istituto per le Risorse Biologiche e le Biotecnologie Marine (IRBIM), Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), Italy
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0003-1754-4226

Gioacchino Bono
Istituto per le Risorse Biologiche e le Biotecnologie Marine (IRBIM), Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), Italy
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0001-5936-4296

Fabio Fiorentino
Istituto per le Risorse Biologiche e le Biotecnologie Marine (IRBIM), Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), Italy
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0002-6302-649X

Francesco Colloca
Istituto per le Risorse Biologiche e le Biotecnologie Marine (IRBIM), Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR) - Department of Biology and Biotechnology “C. Darwin”, Sapienza University of Rome, Italy
orcid http://orcid.org/0000-0002-0574-2893

Abstract


Single-species Gadget models were used to assess the effects of using a sorting grid mounted on the traditional trawl net used by Sicilian trawlers to exploit the deep-water rose shrimp in the Strait of Sicily. The main commercial by-catch species of this fleet is the European hake (Merluccius merluccius), often caught at sizes well below the minimum conservation reference size. Selectivity curves based on the results of an experimental survey carried out in the area using a commercial trawler equipped with an ad hoc-designed sorting grid were incorporated into single-species Gadget models to forecast the effects of changing fishery selectivity on the performance of the two stocks in terms of catch and biomass. The models included catch data from the Italian, Tunisian and Maltese fleets as well as MEDITS trawl survey data for the period 2002-2016. Several scenarios were defined to simulate the effect of the Italian trawlers’ adopting the sorting grid under different stock-recruitment assumptions. The results obtained, when compared with status quo simulations of fishing without a sorting grid mounted on the trawl net, indicated a beneficial effect for both stocks in terms of an increase in biomass and for the fleets in terms of the amount and size composition of annual landings.

Keywords


Gadget; forecast; selectivity; sorting grids; trawl net; Strait of Sicily

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