Organizers: Marc Taquet1, Cédric Ponsonnet2 & Michel Blanc3

Affiliations: 1/ Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (IRD-Tahiti) ; 2/ Direction des Ressources Marines et Minières (DRMM-Tahiti) ; 3/ Communauté du Pacifique (CPS – New Caledonia)

Email: marc.taquet@ird.fr; cedric.ponsonnet@drm.gov.pf; MichelBl@spc.int

Lead contact: Marc Taquet

Description: Today, more than 50% of worldwide tropical tuna catches (albacore, skipjack tuna, big eye tuna) take place under drifting Fish Aggregating Devices (FADs). The massive used of drifting FADs by the industrial tuna purse seine fisheries all around the tropical belt of the world is of great concerned due to the risk of overexploitation for several tuna stocks. Moreover, drifting FADs are responsible for large number of accidental catch of endangered species like shark and sea turtle. On the opposite, anchored FADs can be considered effective small-scale fisheries management tools, which make it possible to transfer fishing pressure away from the coasts towards the open ocean, thereby favouring the harvest of species (pelagic fish) that are less sensitive at that scale.
During this session, we will discuss about several aspects of the FAD issues, both in small-scale and large industrial fisheries (management, limits, mitigation, …). Moreover, we will also discuss about the behaviour of fish around floating objects in order to describe and better understand the aggregative behaviour of the different pelagic species around drifting and anchored FADs.

Expected Audience: We expect scientists interested in the comprehension of the aggregative phenomenon and behaviors of fish around floating objects (moored or drifting). It will be very interesting to share opinions from different stakeholders (fishermen, managers and scientists) from several islands and countries of the Indo-Pacific Region about the use of anchored and drifting FADs in the tuna or the related species fisheries.