Resiliency of Gadid Stocks to Fishing and Climate Change

24th Lowell Wakefield Fisheries Symposium

Hotel Captain Cook
Anchorage, Alaska, USA
October 31–November 3, 2006

This symposium brought together scientists and managers of gadid and gadid-like fisheries from the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic Ocean regions. The family Gadidae (and gadid-like fish) includes about 30 species, nearly all marine. This group includes the cods, haddocks, pollocks, lings, whitings, and hakes. Participants discussed the resiliency of gadid stocks to fishing and climate change, taking a comparative approach across different management systems and marine ecosystems, and over multiple climate regimes.

The symposium was motivated by the high commercial importance of gadids, the long and colorful history of research and management of this group of fishes, and the remarkable disparities in their stock and fishery dynamics exhibited in different regions of the world. The intent was to develop a better understanding of the underlying causative mechanisms, by drawing contrasts between gadid stocks and fishery dynamics from different marine ecosystems. For instance, a large biomass of pollock sustains the world’s largest commercial fishery in the Bering Sea, and a Pacific hake stock supports a large fishery off the U.S. West Coast, both of which appear to remain healthy after decades of exploitation. In contrast, many cod stocks in both the northeast and northwest Atlantic Ocean experienced dramatic fishery collapses in the 1980s and 1990s, causing severe economic dislocation. Some of these fisheries have remained closed following stock collapse with no signs of stock recovery, whereas others have rebounded. Why do such differences exist?

The proceedings includes eighteen peer-reviewed research and review papers on gadids that were presented at the symposium.

Please see links at left for other symposium information.