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A conceptual framework for the protection of vulnerable habitats impacted by fishing activities in the Mediterranean high seas

Authorsde Juan, Silvia ; Lleonart, Jordi
Issue DateNov-2010
PublisherPergamon Press
CitationOcean and Coastal Management 53(11): 717-723 (2010)
AbstractThis work aims to compile knowledge on ecologically rich habitats that deserve special protection in the Mediterranean high seas. Many marine ecosystems are currently threatened by fishing activities, such as bottom trawling, gillnets and demersal and pelagic long-lines. Especially vulnerable are areas described as either sensitive habitats or essential fish habitats. Among these we highlight the associations of sessile organisms, such as cold coral reefs, mostly detected on continental slopes, seamounts and on the walls of submarine canyons, and those areas considered as hot spots of diversity and habitat of vulnerable fauna, like cold seeps, hydrothermal vents and submarine canyons. Essential habitats for pelagic species are defined by oceanographic features like productive areas associated with upwelling, and in the Mediterranean the spawning areas and migratory routes of bluefin tuna, swordfish, and albacore are of high conservation interest. We propose that in a context of difficult fisheries management in Mediterranean international waters, or high seas, these vulnerable habitats should be protected through the establishment of a web of Marine Protected Areas coordinated by all the involved countries and controlled by strict surveillance
Description7 pages, 3 figures, 3 tables
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ocecoaman.2010.10.005
Identifiersdoi: 10.1016/j.ocecoaman.2010.10.005
issn: 0964-5691
e-issn: 1873-524X
Appears in Collections:(ICM) Artículos
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