Sustainable Fisheries

In the past, fishing was carried out on a relatively small scale, so the supply of fish from the ocean remained fairly constant. However, there has been an increasing demand for fish as a major source of food in many areas around the world. As a result, overfishing has become a major problem.

Overfishing refers to the practice of catching more fish than can be replaced through natural reproduction. It can lead to the depletion of fish populations and even their extinction.

Overfishing can also disrupt food chains by removing key species from the ecosystem. Fish play important roles in aquatic food webs as both predators and prey. Their removal can have negative effects on other species.

Sustainable fisheries provide a solution to overfishing by implementing measures to ensure that the amount of fish caught does not exceed the number of new fish born. Therefore, the population of fish does not decrease.

Governments around the world are implementing strategies to reverse the damage caused by overfishing. Two strategies to achieve this are:

  • Setting strict fishing quotas
  • Increasing the size of nets

Setting Strict Fishing Quotas

Governments set strict quotas on the number of fish that can be caught for each species. Reducing the overall catch of a particular species through the use of quotas allows the population to recover and rebuild to more sustainable levels. This can help to reverse the damage caused by overfishing and restore depleted fish populations.

Increasing the Size of Nets

To ensure that smaller and immature fish are not caught, the size of the net should be large enough to allow them to escape through the larger gaps. This allows the fish to grow and reproduce, which can help to restore the population.

Larger gaps in fishing nets can also improve the selectivity of the fishery. This makes it possible to target specific species and sizes of fish. As long as the unwanted fish are smaller than the species being caught, they will escape through the gaps in the net.