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Keywords:

  • fishing mortality;
  • harvest regulations;
  • human dimensions;
  • marine angling tourism;
  • recreational fisheries management

Abstract

The role of recreational fisheries in the competition for marine resources is increasingly recognised. Their contribution in stock dynamics needs to be accounted for in assessments and management. Management regulations should be based on scientific advice on human and biological dimensions to be effective in reaching their goals. A survey among marine angling tourists staying in fishing camps in two study areas in Norway was conducted to study catch-and-release (C&R) behaviour. Although C&R has been assumed to be low in many marine recreational fisheries, this survey showed that for some species, more than 60% of the catch was released. As C&R may be associated with post-release mortalities, the current management system could be inefficient towards its aim of reducing fishing mortality. It was concluded that it is necessary to quantify release mortalities, to consider C&R behaviour in future management decisions, and to minimise the potential negative impacts of C&R through handling guidelines.