Grown populations of seal and cormorant cause a severe threat to the continuation of the fishing livelihood in the Baltic Sea Region, confirms a new study The Impacts of seals and cormorants experienced by Baltic Sea commercial fishers.
A newly published report by the Natural Resources Institute Finland based on 219 interviews of fishers in six countries in the Baltic Sea Region confirms that the impacts of seals and cormorants are a severe threat to the continuation of the small-scale coastal fishing livelihood. The study was carried out in co-operation with The Baltic Sea Seal and Cormorant project, a transnational co-operation operated by the Leader groups and Fisheries Local Action Groups in Sweden, Finland, Germany and Estonia. For the first time, the seal and cormorant induced damages are estimated this extensively in several Baltic Sea countries.
The Baltic seal and cormorant populations cause direct and indirect damages on especially traditional small-scale coastal fisheries, such as changes in fish stocks and behaviour, reduction of catch, and damages in gear and on the fish. The report discusses the multiplicity of the impacts and warrants for a wide cross-sectional collaboration together with fishers and other stakeholder groups when designing mitigation of the seal and cormorant induced problems.
“The effects of seals and cormorants would often necessitate changes in fishing strategies and making investments, but the possibility for fishers to find new paths has become narrowed. In this situation, engaging and attracting younger persons to become commercial fishers is challenging,” the report states.
Baltic Sea Seal and Cormorant Transnational Cooperation Project
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