Characterization of the Recreational Fisheries associated with the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (USA)

Loading...
Thumbnail Image

Date

2011

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

Abstract

"The demand on our marine resources is increasing at unsustainable rates at the same time that many fish stocks are overfished, already collapsed or at risk of extinction. In 2006, recreational anglers landed about 4,809 mt of coastal pelagic species in the Gulf of Mexico, which was above the Maximum Sustainable Yield estimate (4,702 mt). Despite this urgency, marine policy and management is complex, controversial, and time consuming. One tool that resource managers use for managing, protecting, and conserving marine resources is designating Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). Presently, the public is concerned with the impacts of fishing on the status of fish stocks associated with the Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary (FGBNMS). Recreational fishing is among the most popular marine activities associated with MPAs; however, few studies have evaluated the impact of this activity on the local resources. Given these conservation and social issues, the main goal of this study was to provide a characterization of the recreational fisheries associated with the FGBNMS. Findings showed that recreational landings were dominated by red snapper, vermilion snapper, and gray triggerfish. Cumulative landings and catch rates varied significantly by species, month and location. Overall, the highest fishing effort was in summer, and the highest catch rates were in winter. The greatest catch rates for reef fish and coastal pelagic species were in the southernmost (Laguna Madre) and northernmost (Galveston) origination ports, respectively. Based on monthly catches, there was some evidence that recreational anglers target spawning snapper aggregations. The annual mean weight for gray triggerfish was stable, but the mean weight of both red and vermilion snapper declined between 1986 and 2006."

Description

Keywords

conservation, marine resources--policy, protected areas

Citation

Collections