Where the Waters Meet: Sharing Ideas and Experiences between Inland and Marine Realms to Promote Sustainable Fisheries Management

S. J. Cooke, R. Arlinghaus, D. M. Bartley, T. D. Beard, I. G. Cowx, T. E. Essington, O. P. Jensen, A. Lynch, W. W. Taylor, R. Watson, (In Press). Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences.

Although inland and marine environments, their fisheries, fishery managers, and the realm-specific management approaches are often different, there are a surprising number of similarities that frequently go unrecognized. We contend that there is much to be gained by greater cross-fertilization and exchange of ideas and strategies between realms and the people who manage them. The purpose of this paper is to provide examples of the potential or demonstrated benefits of working across aquatic boundaries for enhanced sustainable management of the world’s fisheries resources. Examples include the need to: (1) engage in habitat management and protection as the foundation for fisheries, (2) rethink institutional arrangements and management for open access fisheries systems, (3) establish ‘reference points’ and harvest control rules, (4) engage in integrated management approaches, (5) reap conservation benefits from the link to fish as food, and (6) reframe conservation and management of fish to better engage the public and industry. Cross-fertilization and knowledge transfer between realms could be realized using environment-independent curricula and symposia, joint scientific advisory councils for management, integrated development projects, and cross-realm policy dialogue. Given the interdependence of marine and inland fisheries, promoting discussion between the realms has the potential to promote meaningful advances in managing global fisheries.