The purpose of this project was to improve fisheries dependent livelihoods of the poor through the global uptake promotion and increased awareness of the wide range of stock assessment tools and guidelines produced by FMSP projects, and their increased use by fisheries resource managers as appropriate to their circumstances. The project promoted the uptake of stock assessment tools and guidelines developed by over 20 previous FMSP projects. These tools include new methodologies and software packages (LFDA, CEDA, Yield and ParFish) that provide significant benefits over other alternatives, particularly in terms of providing precautionary management advice allowing for uncertainties in assessments.
The project developed a framework guide to the use of the FMSP stock assessment tools, supported its distribution to a global target audience as an FAO Fisheries Technical Paper, and provided locally adapted training to potential users in DFID target states in India. The guide places the FMSP tools with a framework that is broadly based on the FAO Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries, and that emphasizes the important role of stock assessment in providing a scientific, feedback-based process for fishery management. It outlines the need for setting goals and operational objectives; for defining these explicitly as reference points for a range of fishery indicators; and for adopting decision control rules that include precautionary thresholds allowing for uncertainties and risk tolerances. The framework provides a basis for comparing and evaluating widely differing stock assessment methodologies in terms of the inputs required, and of the different intermediate parameters, fishery indicators and reference points produced. The project supported the publication and global distribution of 3 000 copies of the 15-chapter, 300-page document, including the software packages on a companion CD. A training workshop promoting the uptake of the FMSP software packages and other tools was held at Mangalore College of Fisheries, India in September 2004, under the guidance of a local steering committee of target institute members. The workshop was attended by 20 Indian trainees, and also by two participants from the Bangladesh DOF, funded at the expense of the DFID Fourth Fisheries Project.
These outputs will assist fishery scientists to select and use the most appropriate FMSP or other stock assessment tools for their circumstances, and thereby contribute to the sustainability of livelihoods for poor fishery stakeholders. Uptake of these outputs will be further promoted by the development of a concise 'managers guide' to the FMSP stock assessment tools in a follow-on FMSP project (05/04); and also by further externally funded training, e.g. as requested following the Mangalore workshop by the DFID Fourth Fisheries Project for Bangladesh, now being arranged.
Marine Resources Assessment Group Ltd, London, UK, 13 pp.