Collaborators: University of Cape Coast (Ghana)
Goal: Determine the life history characteristics of sardines as well as fishing gear selectivity, then use these data to simulate population dynamics under seasonal and spatial closures.
Significance: The results from this project will improve fisheries that are important for food security and are the mainstay of the fishing sector in Ghana.
Background: Over 2 million residents in Ghana rely on the fisheries sector for livelihood and subsistence, primarily concentrated on pelagic fish species in the genus Sardinella. The sardinella stock, however, has been dwindling for over a decade due to overfishing and habitat destruction. Management strategies based on effort control and gear restrictions have failed in the past; alternative management solutions may be ecologically viable in this context, but there has been little research to test such strategies. Data-driven and ecosystem-based solutions are needed to prevent empty nets for fishing communities in Ghana.