Northeast ecosystem component


Fishing-related communities can be based on places (on land or at sea) or interests (type or location of fishing activity). They are founded on consistent interaction: face-to-face, via marine radio, or online (such as social media sites for fishermen)1. “Communities at-sea” are groups of fishermen that work fish the same grounds2,3 and may be involved in information-sharing networks about fishing, weather, or other at-sea conditions4-7. Place-based coastal “fishing communities,” as defined under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA), require specific examination under MSA National Standard 8 (aka the communities standard; 16 U.S.C. § 1851(a)(8))1,8.

Calais, ME
Calais, ME. Credit: NOAA

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    1. 1. Clay, Patricia and Julia Olson. 2008. Defining ‘Fishing Communities’: Vulnerability and the Magnuson-Stevens Fisheries Conservation and Management Act, Special section on Vulnerability and Resilience in the Fisheries. Patricia Pinto da Silva and Madeleine Hall, Arber, Guest editors. Human Ecology Review 15(2):143-160.

    2. 2. St. Martin, Kevin and Julia Olson. 2017. “Creating Space for Community in Marine Conservation and Management: Mapping ‘Communities at Sea’,” in Conservation in the Anthropocene Ocean, Levin, P. and M. Poe eds. (Elsevier), pp. 123-141.

    3. 3. St. Martin, Kevin and Madeleine Hall-Arber. 2008. Creating a Place for "Community" in New England Fisheries. Human Ecology Review 15(2):161-170.

    4. 4. Gatewood, John B. 1987. Information-sharing cliques and information networks. American Ethnologist 14(4):777-778.

    5. 5. Palmer, Craig T. 1991. Kin-selection, reciprocal altruism, and information sharing among Maine lobstermen. Ethology and Sociobiology 12(3):221-235.

    6. 6. Ramírez-Sanchez, Saudiel and Evelyn Pinkerton. 2009. The impact of resource scarcity on bonding and bridging social capital: the case of fishers’ information-sharing networks in Loreto, BCS, Mexico. Ecology and Society 14(1):22.

    7. 7. Turner, Rachel, Nicholas Polunin, and Selina Stead. 2014. Social networks and fishers’ behavior: exploring the links between information flow and fishing success in the Northumberland lobster fishery. Ecology and Society 19(2):38.

    8. 8. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (2007) Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act. US Gov 1851:178