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Harvesting and Collection of Animal Forest Species

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Jones, A. M., Thornhill, D. J. and Roelofs, A. J. (2015) Harvesting and Collection of Animal Forest Species. In: Marine Animal Forests: The Ecology of Benthic Biodiversity Hotspots. Springer International Publishing, Cham. ISBN 978-3-319-17001-5

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Article Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-17001-5_28-1

Publisher URL: http://link.springer.com/referenceworkentry/10.1007%2F978-3-319-17001-5_28-1


The harvest and trade of corals and other benthic organisms from the world’s shallow tropical reefs is a lucrative industry that can have positive socioeconomic benefits for communities while supplying the increasing demand specimens for aquaria and curios. For most countries, this trade has historically been almost entirely unregulated. More recently, in response to concerns about the rapid decline of some reefs in the face of anthropogenic and natural pressures, as well as indications of depletions and even localized extinctions of some species caused by harvesting, there have been attempts to improve the sustainability of the industry. Both developing and developed countries face different impediments to this reform, the most pressing and common of which is the lack of reliable data on world trade through CITES. Thereafter, differences in the processes through which reform can be implemented are based principally on the length of the supply chain from collection to export, the degree of industry stewardship, and resourcing. The coral collection fishery in Queensland, Australia, provides an example where continual improvements in reporting and risk assessments and adopting a comanagement approach are delivering better adaptive management of the resource, although the on-ground sustainability benefits of this approach are still to be tested. A simpler approach to sustainable use of coral is to favor the replacement of wild harvested specimens with those bred or grown entirely in an aquaculture facility (as opposed to merely collected and then grown out in culture). Yet there are major impediments to this change, including the dependence of many public aquaria on the same sources as the hobbyist community, difficulties of culturing some species in captivity, and infrastructure costs. Nevertheless, this approach will likely play an important part in reef conservation efforts in the future.

Item Type:Book Section
Business groups:Fisheries Queensland
Keywords:Aquarium harvest – Aquarium trade – Aquaculture – Aquarist – CITES – Coral collecting – Coral harvest – Coral reef – Wild harvest – Wildlife trade – Precious coral
Subjects:Aquaculture and Fisheries
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > By region or country > Australia
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Fishery conservation
Live Archive:31 Aug 2016 05:34
Last Modified:03 Sep 2021 16:50

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