Harvesting Krill Ecological Impact. Assessment. Products and Markets (UBC 1995)

CapturaThis 1995 report from the University of British Columbia challenge Krill biomass assessment technologies, e.g abundance versus acoustic, the latter used for fish larger than krill.  It gathers various authors’ contributions on this matter.

Modeling krill population dynamics is subject to considerable uncertainty, and with it its impact in commercial activities and catch quota allocation models, an ongoing discussion between regulatory organizations and the fishing industry.

This report also addresses CCAMLR’s two philosophies in its approach to managing Antarctic resource exploitation; the precautionary and the ecosystem approach.

The precautionary approach is essentially a set of guidelines for responsible exploitation where one of its central concepts is that fisheries should develop in a controlled way in concordance with the information available to manage them, and that the consequences of development should be demonstrated prior to that development, approach that has been the subject of much international discussion.

The ecosystem approach deals with the uncertainty that arise naturally out of this philosophy. Among the consequences is the effects these fisheries have on dependent and related species.

The report addresses krill fisheries off Canadian and Japanese waters.

It also goes back to the Antarctic Treaty when it reached an agreement as the Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources which came into force in 1982 as the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR), today’s regulatory body of South Antarctic krill harvesting.  CCAMLR is unique among regulatory bodies since the Convention requires it to take an ecosystem approach to management.

One chapter discusses about the non-solved problems in krill exploitation which has been the by-catch of fish larvae that use the krill swarms as their habitat. The detection of this problem started together with the massive antarctic krill exploitation during the 80’s. There has been recognized several fish species whose larvae develop within the krill swarms, nevertheless, few have had the quantitative evaluation that gives evidence that this technological interaction is affecting the recovery of over-exploited populations or that commercial or non- commercial populations are diminishing.

Full report at http://www.tharos.biz/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/58.-Harvesting-Krill-Ecological-Impact.-Assessment.-Products-and-Markets-UBC.pdf

More from UBC at http://www.fisheries.ubc.ca/biblio/type/1000

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Dimitri Sclabos

Founder and Co-owner