Integrating spatial processes into ecosystem models for sustainable utilisation of fish resources

INSPIRE OjaveerCoordinator: Henn Ojaveer, Estonian Marine Institute, University of Tartu
Total budget: EUR 3.6 million
Duration: 4 years, 01.02.2014-31.01.2018

Summaries of annual reports:
BONUS INSPIRE year 3 report
BONUS INSPIRE year 2 report
BONUS INSPIRE year 1 report

Process-based understanding of changes in fish distributions, including especially in order to distinguish and quantify the role of natural drivers and anthropogenic impacts, is still an increasingly challenging research topic with high relevance to resource management. The overall objective of the project is to advance the knowledge base and develop quantitative measures to evaluate consequences of spatial and temporal heterogeneity in the Baltic Sea for an ecosystem-based management of the major fishery resources. The overarching tasks are to: 1) increase knowledge on the habitat requirements of different life stages of cod, herring, sprat and flounder, and identify conditions under which the connectivity between different life stages’ habitats is at risk, 2) account for processes shaping spatial and temporal heterogeneity of habitats and distributions of fish in an ecosystem-based management. The methods used will be a combination of dedicated field studies by involving fishermen, and process studies by means of multidisciplinary approaches, results of which will feed into fish stock assessment and ecosystem models made spatially explicit for the first time in the Baltic Sea. In addition to multidisciplinary science and high management relevance, the project also includes an extensive outreach component to ensure a wide dissemination of the results. Importantly, stakeholder involvement starts already at the data generation phase and continues till the end of the project.

: Spatio-temporal dynamics, major commercial fish, flatfish assessment, fishermen involvement, ecosystem-based management

Partners: Estonia, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Poland, Sweden

Introductory article:
see BONUS in Brief December 2013

For more information visit BONUS INSPIRE's website and the BONUS projects' website.