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Evaluating the effectiveness of management measures on skates in a changing world

Elliott, Sophie A.M., Bearup, Daniel, Carpentier, Alexandre, Larivain, Angela, Trancart, Thomas, Feunteun, Eric (2020) Evaluating the effectiveness of management measures on skates in a changing world. Biological Conservation, 248 . Article Number 108684. ISSN 0006-3207. (doi:10.1016/j.biocon.2020.108684) (KAR id:82492)


Global declines in elasmobranchs have been observed. Conservation measures such as area closures and fisheries prohibitions have been put in place to support the recovery of vulnerable species. However, the effectiveness of such measures is rarely evaluated in the context of other factors that may affect population abundance. This study investigates the effectiveness of management measures using 1) General additive mixed model derivative changes, taking into account environmental factors that may affect population stochasticity and 2) an age-structured density dependent population dynamic model. The Raja undulata (undulate ray) 2009 targeted fisheries prohibition was used as a case study. Potential beneficial responses on sympatric species Raja clavata (thornback ray) were modelled. A significant increase in abundance was observed in both IUCN red list species during the ban. Surface seawater temperature had a marginal effect on the abundance of both species. The prohibition was in place for an insufficient length of time for long lasting effects to be detected on skate length. The population dynamic model indicated that the increase in abundance was only possible when combining the fisheries ban with increased juvenile discard survival. Our results indicate that species conservation measures may not only have positive effects on the species in question, but also on species with a niche overlap. Nonetheless, due to ongoing fishing for other species, the full potential of fisheries prohibitions may not be realised. For real benefits to be assessed, evaluation of bans should take place once a steady state is observed.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1016/j.biocon.2020.108684
Uncontrolled keywords: Climate change, Elasmobranchs, IUCN red list species, Management measures, Population dynamic model, Species conservation
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Computing, Engineering and Mathematical Sciences > School of Mathematics, Statistics and Actuarial Science
Depositing User: Daniel Bearup
Date Deposited: 17 Aug 2020 11:54 UTC
Last Modified: 09 Dec 2022 05:39 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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