150 Years of Fish Stocking in the Archipelago of Stockholm: Gambling with Ecological and Social Resilience?

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"The focus of this paper is the evolution between the use of fish stocking, common-pool fish resources, and resource user structures in the Archipelago of Stockholm between 1850-2000. Major drivers for fish stocking include development of hatchery techniques, governmental policy, overexploitation, environmental degradation and urbanization. The dominating management incentive of fish stocking is to counteract uncertainty by creating constant fish catches, thereby supporting sports fishing, tourism and providing local employment. Three major categories of fish stocking are used to attain these goals: new introduction, enhancement or complementation, and supplementation. A new culture-based, mixed-stock, put-grow-and-take fishery has been built-up in the archipelago, focusing on a narrow range of piscivorous food and game species. Consequences of fish stocking include loss of social resilience due to masking effects of ecosystem disturbances, support of user shift from commercial to sport fishery, loss of traditional ecological knowledge, and increasing open-access fishing. Ecological and genetic effects, resulting in loss of functional diversity, risk rendering the archipelago ecosystem less resilient to withstand sudden perturbations. In all, the rapid development and use of fish stocking in combination with the mis-match of temporal and spatial scales between the social systems and nature, has resulted in a spiral effect: fish stocking > new drivers emerging > increasing pressure on managers to release fish > new fish stockings, etc. The short-term and single-species focus among managers and resource users is not consistent with developing an adaptive co-management to secure the future generation of ecosystem services."
IASC, co-management, common pool resources, local knowledge, fisheries--history, resource management, institutional analysis