Work Packages of the Beaufort Research EAFM Project

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Ecosystem Area Definition Defining Ecosystem Areas: The definition of clear boundaries of ecosystems, consistent with management scales, is a requirement for the development of successful ecosystem management plans.
Ecosystem Area Definition Baseline Information: EAFM requires a broadening of the knowledge base to include comprehensive baseline information, imlpying challenges in data acquisition and data management.
Ecosystem Area Definition Fishing Impacts: EAF has increased the scope of fisheries management. In particular the ecological focus has broadened from concerns about target species and resources to concerns about non target species, including protected species, habitats, ecological communities and socio economics.
Top Marine Predators Top Marine Predator Interactions: With major declines in world fish stocks over the last few decades there has been increased interest in the extent of competition for resources between commercial fisheries and top marine predators such as marine mammals and seabirds.
Ecosystem Area Definition Marine System Modelling: EAFM specifically requires research to build a working understanding of how ecosystems function, especially in terms of inter-species interactions, and how these lead to higher ecosystem properties.
Decision Making Framework Decision Making Framework: Governance models that emphasise the potential added value of greater direct public participation have received considerable attention within the ecosystem agenda. Many theoretical approaches are advocated but a challenge exists in translating this theory into practice within existing democratic structures.
Ecosystem Area Definition Stakeholder Engagement: The ecosystem approach explicitly recognises the central importance of people in natural resource management. It aims to facilitate cooperative stakeholder engagement and will feed into the development of the EAF Management Plans.
Ecosystem Area Definition Synthesis- Evolving Scientific Advice for Fisheries: In 2004, an estimated 700,000 tonnes of fish were harvested by the international fleets from the Irish EEZ with an estimated value of 500 million. These fish stocks are managed by the EU under the Common Fisheries Policy.
Management Plans Management Plans: The EAF is not seen as a replacement for, but rather an extension of current fisheries management practices that need to be broadened to take account of the biotic, abiotic and human components of ecosystems in which fisheries operate.