Different bottom trawl fisheries have a differential impact on the status of the North Sea seafloor habitats

Type Article
Date 2020-09
Language English
Author(s) Rijnsdorp A D1, Hiddink J G2, Van Denderen P D3, 4, Hintzen N T1, Eigaard O R3, Valanko S4, Bastardie F3, Bolam S G5, Boulcott P6, Egekvist J3, Garcia C5, Van Hoey G7, Jonsson P8, Laffargue PascalORCID9, Nielsen J R3, Piet G J1, Sköld M8, Van Kooten T1, Degraer Steven
Affiliation(s) 1 : Wageningen Marine Research, Wageningen University and Research, PO Box 68, AB IJmuiden 1970, Netherlands
2 : School of Ocean Sciences, Bangor University, Menai Bridge LL59 5AB, UK
3 : National Institute of Aquatic Resources (DTU AQUA), Technical University of Denmark, 2800 Kgs. Lyngby, Denmark
4 : International Council for the Exploration of the Sea, Copenhagen, Denmark
5 : CEFAS, Lowestoft, UK
6 : Marine Scotland, Aberdeen, UK
7 : ILVO, Oostende, Belgium
8 : Department of Aquatic Resources, Institute of Marine Research, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Lysekil, Sweden
9 : IFREMER, Nantes, France
Source Ices Journal Of Marine Science (1054-3139) (Oxford University Press (OUP)), 2020-09 , Vol. 77 , N. 5 , P. 1772-1786
DOI 10.1093/icesjms/fsaa050
WOS© Times Cited 25
Keyword(s) beam trawl, dredge, footprint, method comparison, otter trawl, recovery, seafloor habitats, seine, soft sediment, trawling impact

Fisheries using bottom trawls are the most widespread source of anthropogenic physical disturbance to seafloor habitats. To mitigate such disturbances, the development of fisheries-, conservation-, and ecosystem-based management strategies requires the assessment of the impact of bottom trawling on the state of benthic biota. We explore a quantitative and mechanistic framework to assess trawling impact. Pressure and impact indicators that provide a continuous pressure–response curve are estimated at a spatial resolution of 1 × 1 min latitude and longitude (∼2 km2) using three methods: L1 estimates the proportion of the community with a life span exceeding the time interval between trawling events; L2 estimates the decrease in median longevity in response to trawling; and population dynamic (PD) estimates the decrease in biomass in response to trawling and the recovery time. Although impact scores are correlated, PD has the best performance over a broad range of trawling intensities. Using the framework in a trawling impact assessment of ten métiers in the North Sea shows that muddy habitats are impacted the most and coarse habitats are impacted the least. Otter trawling for crustaceans has the highest impact, followed by otter trawling for demersal fish and beam trawling for flatfish and flyshooting. Beam trawling for brown shrimps, otter trawling for industrial fish, and dredging for molluscs have the lowest impact. Trawling is highly aggregated in core fishing grounds where the status of the seafloor is low but the catch per unit of effort (CPUE) per unit of impact is high, in contrast to peripheral grounds, where CPUE per unit of impact is low.

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Rijnsdorp A D, Hiddink J G, Van Denderen P D, Hintzen N T, Eigaard O R, Valanko S, Bastardie F, Bolam S G, Boulcott P, Egekvist J, Garcia C, Van Hoey G, Jonsson P, Laffargue Pascal, Nielsen J R, Piet G J, Sköld M, Van Kooten T, Degraer Steven (2020). Different bottom trawl fisheries have a differential impact on the status of the North Sea seafloor habitats. Ices Journal Of Marine Science, 77(5), 1772-1786. Publisher's official version : https://doi.org/10.1093/icesjms/fsaa050 , Open Access version : https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00625/73687/