Recreational anglers’ preferences about harvest regulations to protect a threatened freshwater fish in France - INRAE - Institut national de recherche pour l’agriculture, l’alimentation et l’environnement Access content directly
Journal Articles Journal of Environmental Management Year : 2023

Recreational anglers’ preferences about harvest regulations to protect a threatened freshwater fish in France

Abstract

A number of freshwater fish particularly migratory species are currently under threat. As the pressure of recreational fishing has intensified, this activity needs to be more regulated to halt the decline of threatened fish stocks. This paper presents results of an economic valuation study of anglers' preferences for a change in the rules applying to Twaite shad fisheries in south-western France. Twaite shad has become a "near-threatened" species, with the same IUCN status as the Atlantic salmon. As shad recreational angling continues to be open access, new regulations are required to limit recreational harvest in support of a management strategy to prevent stock reduction even to foster stock recovery. We combined a deliberative choice experiment with open group discussion to obtain an in-depth understanding of anglers' preferences between two types of traditional regulatory instrument - a license fee or a bag limit. The closure of the fishery served as the reference scenario. The results indicate that the majority of anglers were aware of the decline of Twaite shad stocks. The recreational value of the species remains high, especially for those who already target migratory species. Although econometric estimations show that there are heterogeneous preferences across anglers, there were support for a change toward a bag limit, and an aversion for a high-priced licence fee. The findings also provided two key insights to improve recreational fishing management and preservation policy for threatened species. The communication of observation data on fish stock could not be considered as a sufficient ecological information to ensure threatened species monitoring leads to an effective co-management with anglers' community. Anglers' aversion to loss can be seen as a behaviour mechanism towards the preservation of the species rather than to its use.
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Dates and versions

hal-04297783 , version 1 (21-11-2023)

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Tina Rambonilaza, Fathallah Kerouaz, Christophe Boschet. Recreational anglers’ preferences about harvest regulations to protect a threatened freshwater fish in France. Journal of Environmental Management, 2023, 332, pp.117356. ⟨10.1016/j.jenvman.2023.117356⟩. ⟨hal-04297783⟩
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