Temporal and regional variation in catch across an extensive coastal recreational fishery: exploring the utility of survey methods to guide and assess spatio-temporal management initiatives
As global research into recreational fishing gains momentum due to the pursuit’s biological, social and economic impacts, information on regional and temporal patterns of recreational exploitation will continue to enable objective assessment and development of management initiatives for exploited species. This paper demonstrates the utility of offsite survey methods in assessing spatial and temporal differences in recorded catches from a large, diffuse and heterogenous coastal recreational fishery. Using the estuarine recreational fishery that operates along the coast of New South Wales, Australia as a case study, survey data was employed to quantify annual (June 2013-May 2014) state-wide estuarine catch. Generalized linear mixed effects models were then applied to expanded catch estimates from surveyed households to examine the influence of zone and season on the kept and released numbers of snapper (Pagrus auratus), dusky flathead (Platycephalus fuscus) and bream (Acanthopagrus spp. complex comprised of A. butcheri, A. australis and their hybrids). For kept bream, significant differential seasonal effects were observed in all regions except the Mid-South Coast. For released bream, numbers were greatest in Sydney and during Summer and Winter. For kept snapper, the greatest harvest was recorded in the Mid-South Coast but season had no effect. Differential seasonal effects were found in each zone for released snapper. For kept dusky flathead, the greatest numbers were recorded in Sydney and the Mid-South Coast but season had no effect. We conclude by assessing some current spatial and temporal management initiatives in light of the uncovered patterns of recreational catch and consider the implications of these patterns in terms of future ecosystem-based management recommendations aimed at achieving ecological, social and economic sustainability in fisheries.
Publication titlePLoS ONE
Department/SchoolInstitute for Marine and Antarctic Studies
PublisherPublic Library of Science
Place of publicationUnited States
Rights statementCopyright: © 2021 Ochwada-Doyle et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0 License, (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.