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Implementation of a multispecies model GADGET to the ecosystem of Flemish Cap and incorporation to the fisheries stock assessment of NAFO; a case study


Most of the worldwide marine fish resources are fully exploited or overexploited. There is a general consensus to change fisheries management toward a multispecies approach that considers species interactions and don´t overestimate stock-biomass per recruit, as it occurs with the current monospecific approach. GADGET has been considered by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) the multispecies model with the greatest potential for practical advice in fisheries management. The Flemish Cap, a traditional fishing ground for European fleet in the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization (NAFO) area 3M, experienced since 1988 clear alternations from predators (cod Gadus morhua and adult redfish Sebastes sp.) to preys (Northern shrimp Pandalus borealis and juvenile redfish), suggesting strong interconnections in the dynamic of these commercial species. The Working Group for the Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries Management (WGEAFM) leads an innovative framework in the NAFO area. Flemish Cap constitutes an ideal case study to start developing this framework due to its isolation, relative simplicity (cod, redfish and shrimp: 85% of total biomass) and the long and high quality database (since 1988). GADCAP deals with the creation of a GADGET multispecies model in the Flemish Cap, including cod, redfish and shrimp, considering the most relevant biological information, predator-prey consumption, and fleet characteristics. With the resulting multispecies model, several projections of population state will be conducted for all modeled species by introducing variations in recruitment, species interactions and fishing mortality. Different scenarios will be considered in the bosom of NAFO management strategies. Based in the innovative approach conducted by the WGEAFM, GADCAP represents an extraordinary opportunity to go further on in the development of the multispecies and ecosystem management approaches not just for the NAFO area, but also for other European fishing grounds

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Nordnesgaten 50
5817 Bergen

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Activity type
Research Organisations
Administrative Contact
Turid Stamnesfet Loddengaard (Ms.)
EU contribution
€ 216 034,20