Fish Spektrum vessel

Balearic Islands boat seine fisheries: the transparent goby fishery an example of management

An economically important, small-scale fishery operates during the winter months in Mallorca. Using a special surrounding net that is hauled over the sand and gravel bottoms of bays at depths reaching 30 m, it primarily targets Aphia minuta and Pseudaphya ferreri, but other goby species and juveniles of the Pagellus spp are also caught. Similar fisheries are operated on the Spanish coast and in Italy. This fishery is run with specific licenses, equipment controls, and closed seasons (based on species availability). In cooperation with local fishermen, the administration has in recent years established a daily quota for sustaining the sales prices 22of the species caught. A management plan was set up in 2013 in accordance with European Union rules to ensure the sustainability of the fishery. Its sustainable quotas have been set at 30 kg/day/boat for A. minuta and 50 kg/day/boat for P. ferreri, and the by-catch cannot exceed 10% of the total catch. Landings are permitted in 11 fixed
ports and only 35 boats can fish with the regulated nets from December 15 to April 30. A co-management committee was created with the participation of the public administration, fishermen’s associations, researchers, and certain non-governmental organizations. The comanagement process was revised and fishermen’s opinions were obtained in a successful enquiry that was answered by the majority of the operating fleet, and their views on the management rules will be considered in future regulations. The co-management of the small-scale boat seine fishery in the Balearic Islands is thus an ongoing collaborative and communicative process in a local community that continues to evolve over time. Although the fishermen are represented by their port guilds, communication efforts are necessary in the near future to ensure the success of the co-management process.

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