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Missing the target: uncertainties in achieving management goals in fisheries on Fraser River, British Columbia, sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka)

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In sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) fisheries, management targets are rarely achieved exactly, thereby creating uncertainties about outcomes from implementing fishing regulations. Although this type of uncertainty may be large, it is seldom incorporated into simulation models that evaluate management options. One objective of this study was to quantify the deviations that occur between realized and target mortality rates (i.e., the target fraction of adult recruits that die each year during return migration, mostly due to harvesting) in fisheries for sockeye salmon from the Fraser River, British Columbia. We found that for some sockeye stocks, realized mortality rates were higher than targets when recruitment was low (resulting in conservation concerns) and lower than targets when recruitment was high (resulting in foregone catch). Scientists and managers can at least partially account for effects of such deviations between realized and target mortality rates (outcome uncertainties) by choosing target harvest rules that reflect typical patterns in those deviations. We derived a method to permit modelers to incorporate those patterns into analyses of management options.

Dans les pêches de saumons rouges (Oncorhynchus nerka), il est rare d'atteindre exactement les objectifs de gestion, ce qui crée des incertitudes au sujet des résultats de la mise en place des règlements de pêche. Bien que ce type d'incertitude puisse être important, il est rarement inclus dans les modèles de simulation qui évaluent les options de gestion. Un objectif de notre travail est de calculer les déviations qui existent entre les taux de mortalité ciblés et réalisés (c'est-à-dire la fraction de la valeur ciblée représentée par les recrues adultes qui meurent chaque année durant la migration de retour, surtout à cause de la récolte) dans les pêches de saumons rouges dans le Fraser, Colombie-Britannique. Chez certains stocks de saumons rouges, les taux de mortalité réalisés dépassent les valeurs ciblées quand le recrutement est faible (ce qui génère des préoccupations de conservation) et ils sont plus bas que les valeurs ciblées quand le recrutement est important (ce qui cause une perte dans la récolte). Les chercheurs et les gestionnaires peuvent compenser au moins partiellement de telles déviations entre les taux de mortalité réalisés et ciblés (incertitudes de l'issue) en choisissant des règles de récolte ciblée qui tiennent compte de patrons typiques de ces déviations. Nous mettons au point une méthode pour permettre aux modélisateurs d'incorporer ces patrons dans leurs analyses des options de gestion.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2006-12-01

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  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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