EarthLabs > Fisheries > Lab 5: Gone Fishing

Gone Fishing

Introduction

Groundfish catch in Georges Bank, a large elevated area of the sea floor situated between Cape Cod, Massachusetts and Cape Sable Island, Nova Scotia. Photo courtesy of NOAA.

For as long as people have lived near water, people have fished. Sadly, in many instances, the history of fishing is paralleled by a history of overfishing. According to the 2006 Report of Status of U.S. Fisheries, 20% of U.S. fish stocks with known overfishing status are subject to overfishing and 25% of stocks with known overfished status are considered to be overfished. An additional four stocks currently classified as not overfished are approaching overfished status. Contributing factors to the current level of overfishing include:


The impacts of declining fish catches are being painfully felt by many coastal fishing communities around the globe. Jobs are lost and food is scarce. Impacts are also felt in the oceans as other marine species are left with fewer fish to eat. Overfishing affects the entire marine food web. But how do know when overfishing is occurring or when a stock is overfished? More importantly, can these conditions be reversed?

After completing this investigation, you should be able to:



Keeping Track of What You Learn

Throughout these labs, you will find two kinds of questions. Your teacher will let you know which answers you should record and turn in.

« Previous Page      Next Page »