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Perceptions and responses of Pacific Island fishers to changing coral reefs

Abstract : The transformation of coral reefs has profound implicationsformillionsofpeople.However,theinteractive effectsofchangingreefsandfishingremainpoorlyresolved. Wecombineunderwatersurveys(271 000fishes),catchdata (18 000 fishes), and household surveys (351 households) to evaluate how reef fishes and fishers in Moorea, French Polynesia responded to a landscape-scale loss of coral caused by sequential disturbances (a crown-of-thorns sea star outbreak followed by a category 4 cyclone). Although local communities were aware of the disturbances, less than 20% of households reported altering what fishes they caught or ate. This contrasts with substantial changes in the taxonomic composition in the catch data that mirrored changes in fish communities observed on the reef. Our findingshighlightthatresourceusersandscientistsmayhave very different interpretations of what constitutes ‘change’ in these highly dynamic social–ecological systems, with broad implications for successful co-management of coral reef fisheries.
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Submitted on : Thursday, May 23, 2019 - 4:00:41 PM
Last modification on : Friday, November 27, 2020 - 10:12:16 AM

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Andrew Rassweiler, Matthew Lauer, Sarah Lester, Sally Holbrook, Russell Schmitt, et al.. Perceptions and responses of Pacific Island fishers to changing coral reefs. AMBIO: A Journal of the Human Environment, Springer Verlag, 2019, ⟨10.1007/s13280-019-01154-5⟩. ⟨hal-02138200⟩



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