Using harvesters knowledge to develop an individual based computer simulation model of the St. John Bay, Newfoundland lobster (Homarus americanus) fishery

Whalen, Jennifer (2004) Using harvesters knowledge to develop an individual based computer simulation model of the St. John Bay, Newfoundland lobster (Homarus americanus) fishery. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

This thesis draws on fish harvester Local Ecological Knowledge (LEK) to develop a historical reconstruction of the St. John Bay lobster fishery on the west coast of Newfoundland on Canada's east coast. This LEK is then used as a basis to develop an individual based computer simulation model of this lobster fishery that runs from the early 1970s until present. -- The lobster fishery in Newfoundland has been in existence for over one hundred years and it has been heavily managed for many years. LEK, biological information on lobster populations, data on lobster landings, and license data from DFO are used to explore changes in all aspects of the fishery over the past 40 years. A particularly important change was the transfer of many licenses into the Bay in the mid 1980s caused, in part, by the decline in the inshore cod fishery along the west coast of Newfoundland. License transfer contributed to a rapid increase in effort in the Bay, which has translated into interesting changes in terms of the spatial dynamics of the fishery, community structure, and harvesters' behavior and strategies. -- To replicate these changes a model based on individual boats in the fishery was developed. Each boat was assigned individual characteristics and strategies based on information gathered during the fieldwork portion of the research. This model was then used to develop "what-if" scenarios in which I could explore the possible effects of communication between harvesters, changing environmental conditions, and new management initiatives on harvesters' catch, behavior and strategies. The approach developed in this thesis is a first step toward providing a useful technique for evaluating the possible impacts of potential initiatives in fisheries management.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/9926
Item ID: 9926
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 201-209.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Geography
Date: 2004
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Lobster fisheries--Newfoundland and Labrador--St. John Bay --Simulation methods; Lobster fisheries--Newfoundland and Labrador--St. John Bay; Traditional ecological knowledge--Newfoundland and Labrador--St. John Bay.

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