Large Permanent Reserves Required For Effective Conservation Of Old Fish

2016-01-07T14:27:19+00:00 January 5, 2016|
A newly published study in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B has found that the ages and growth rates of long-lived fish species such as the humphead wrasse are important factors in measuring the recovery of Indian Ocean coral reef ecosystems, some of which may need more than 100 years of protection to rebound from overfishing. (Credit: Paolo Macorig/ Flickr)

(Click to enlarge) A newly published study in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B has found that the ages and growth rates of long-lived fish species such as the humphead wrasse are important factors in measuring the recovery of Indian Ocean coral reef ecosystems, some of which may need more than 100 years of protection to rebound from overfishing. (Credit: Paolo Macorig/ Flickr)

Permanent marine protected areas and wilderness — places where fish can grow old — are critical to the effective conservation of marine ecosystems according to a new study conducted by the Wildlife Conservation Society, James Cook University, and Lancaster University.

(From Science Daily) — Unlike previous research focused primarily on the weight or biomass of fish as a measure of reef recovery, this study evaluated the life histories of fish communities. In doing so, the researchers found much slower change — well beyond the 20 years that it took for biomass to recover — and some factors like growth rate were expected to change for more than 100 years. The findings underscore the importance of permanent marine protected areas and wilderness in the effective protection of marine fishes.

The study titled “Marine reserve recovery rates towards a baseline are slower for reef fish community life histories than biomass” appears in the online version of Proceedings of the Royal Society B. The authors are: Tim R. McClanahan of WCS; and N.A.J. Graham of James Cook University and Lancaster University.

Read the full article here: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/12/151223165501.htm.