» Fisheries and Aquaculture

NOAA: How does overfishing threaten coral reefs?

Coral reef ecosystems support important commercial, recreational, and subsistence fishery resources in the U.S and its territories. Fishing also plays a central social and cultural role in many island and coastal communities, where it is often a critical source of food and income. The impacts from unsustainable fishing on coral reef areas can lead to the depletion of key reef species in many locations. Such losses often have a ripple effect, not just on the coral reef ecosystems themselves, but also on the local economies that depend on them. Additionally, certain types of fishing gear can inflict serious physical damage to coral reefs, seagrass beds, and other important marine habitats. Coral reef fisheries, though often relatively small in scale, may have disproportionately large impacts on the ecosystem if conducted unsustainably. Rapid human population growth, increased demand, use of more efficient fishery technologies, and inadequate management and enforcement have led to the depletion of key reef species and habitat damage in many locations. Read More

A Big-Picture Approach to Fisheries Management

U.S. fishery managers often focus on one species at a time when determining how, when, and where fishing takes place. But each fish population is part of an interconnected ecosystem in which they interact with other fish, ocean wildlife, and habitats. Fish are also directly affected by changing environments and human activities. Threats such as ocean acidification, warming waters, overfishing, and habitat destruction can damage ecosystems and cause ripple effects, such as the decline of important fish populations. Read More

ECO MEDIA: Fish and People

Pre-colonial Pacific Island societies by and large existed at human population densities that were far below the carrying capacity of their coastal fisheries and pressure from commercial fishing was non-existent. As a consequence island communities did not ‘encounter the limits’ of their coastal subsistence fisheries. People went about their daily lives harvesting from the sea and blissfully unaware that fish and marine invertebrate populations could be overfished to the point of collapse. Now that human populations are growing almost exponentially and export markets for some fisheries are intensifying, there is an urgent need for the effective communication of a scientific understanding of the limits to fisheries and the life cycles of marine organisms overall. Fish and People is a 50 minute production divided into 5 educational modules explaining the ‘stock-recruitment relationship’ in an easily accessible manner and with a cleverly crafted portfolio of explanatory graphics and natural history vision. It deals with species that are of economic and ecological importance and thus immediately familiar to a Pacific (and broader) audience. The modules are tailored for middle and upper high school students and wider communities and are accompanied by a comprehensive teacher’s guide. By empowering a critical mass of young adults with a clear understanding of how overfishing destroys fisheries and food security, they will potentially innovate their own, ‘bottom-up’ fisheries management strategies as they assume positions of influence within the community, as well as gaining a greater understanding of the need for compliance with ‘top-down’ management approaches such as size limits, gear restrictions, trade agreements and quotas. Fish and People has been scripted by marine biologists Simon Foale and Russell Kelley, and produced by The Eco Media Production Group. Read More

Fishbanks: A Renewable Resource Management Simulation

Fishbanks is a multiplayer web-based simulation in which participants play the role of fishers and seek to maximize their net worth as they compete against other players and deal with variations in fish stocks and their catch. Participants buy, sell, and build ships; decide where to fish; and negotiate with one another. Policy options available to instructors include auctions of new boats, permits, and quotas. The simulation is courtesy of MIT Sloan Teaching Innovation Resources LearningEdge. Read More

Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources (BANR)

The Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources (BANR) is the major program unit of the National Research Council responsible for organizing and overseeing studies on agriculture, forestry, fisheries, wildlife, and the use of land, water, and other natural resources. Read More

Agreement with Canada on Pacific hake/whiting : message from the President of the United States transmitting agreement between the government of the United States of America and the government of Cana

This treaty establishes agreed percentage shares of the trans-boundary stock of Pacific hake, also known as Pacific whiting. It also creates a process through which U.S. and Canadian scientists and fisheries managers will recommend the total catch of Pacific hake each year. Read More

Effects of Sublethal Copper Exposure on Escape Behavior and Growth of Rana pipiens Tadpoles Effects of Sublethal Copper Exposure on Escape Behavior and Growth of Rana pipiens Tadpoles

This research is designed to test how sublethal exposure to copper affects tadpole predator-escape behavior and how quickly tadpoles recover. After exposure, tadpoles were separated. Escape behavior was recorded for two-thirds of exposed tadpoles while one-third of the exposed population was measured weekly to determine growth and recovery. Control tadpoles were consumed within 15 minutes whereas those exposed to higher concentrations were consumed at a slower rate, which does not support the hypotheses. Although the rate of predation was lower, tadpoles exposed to higher Cu concentrations were on average, 1.47 cm in total body length. Those exposed to 0.93 mg/L averaged 0.86 cm. After being placed into clean water, treatment tadpoles recovered after 20 days. Read More

Regional Highlights from Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States

This fact sheet draws information from the Global Climate Change Impacts in the United States report that describes how climate change affects coastal areas in the United States. Read More

Hepatotoxicity of Mercury to Fish

Tissue samples from spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus) and largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) were collected from Caddo Lake. Gar and bass livers were subjected to histological investigation and color analysis. Liver color (as abs at 400 nm) was significantly correlated with total mercury in the liver (r2 = 0.57, p = 0.02) and muscle (r2 = 0.58, p = 0.01) of gar. Evidence of liver damage as lipofuscin and discoloration was found in both species but only correlated with liver mercury concentration in spotted gar. Inorganic mercury was the predominant form in gar livers. In order to determine the role of mercury speciation in fish liver damage, a laboratory feeding study was employed. Zebrafish (Danio rerio) were fed either a control (0.12 ± 0.002 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), inorganic mercury (5.03 ± 0.309 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), or methylmercury (4.11 ± 0.146 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt) diet. After 78 days of feeding, total mercury was highest in the carcass of zebrafish fed methylmercury (12.49 ± 0.369 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), intermediate in those fed inorganic mercury (1.09 ± 0.117 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), and lowest in fish fed the control diet (0.48 ± 0.038 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt). Total mercury was highest in the viscera of methylmercury fed zebrafish (11.6 ± 1.86 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), intermediate in those fed inorganic diets (4.3 ± 1.08 µg Hg.g-1 dry wt), and lowest in the control fish (below limit of detection). Total mercury was negatively associated with fish length and weight in methylmercury fed fish. Condition factor was not associated with total mercury and might not be the best measure of fitness for these fish. No liver pathologies were observed in zebrafish from any treatment. Read More

Living Planet Report 2010: Biodiversity, Biocapacity, and Development

A 57-page report on biodiversity, human demand, natural resource usage, ecosystems, carbon storage, and freshwater provision, including charts and graphs of data. (Large file, may take a long time to download.) Read More

Mission

EERL's mission is to be the best possible online collection of environmental and energy sustainability resources for community college educators and for their students. The resources are also available for practitioners and the public.

EERL & ATEEC

EERL is a product of a community college-based National Science Foundation Center, the Advanced Technology Environmental and Energy Center (ATEEC), and its partners.

Contact ATEEC 563.441.4087 or by email ateec@eicc.edu