Marine mollusks are among the most importantinvertebrate fisheries in the world. The mainclasses of mollusk fished are Cephalopoda,Bivalvia and Gastropoda. Marine gastropodsrepresent approximately 2% of the mollusksfished in the world. Several species ofgastropods, such as Haliotis spp., Strombus spp., Busycon spp. and Concholepas concholepas, have high economicvalue in international markets and playimportant social roles in small-scale artisanalfisheries. In the past 25 years wild-stockcatches of marine gastropods have increasedfrom 75,000 mt in 1979 to 103,000 mt in 1996.During the same period the countries involvedin gastropod landings rose from 23 to 47.Gastropods are fished mainly in: (1) theAmerican continent, dominated by the extractionof the muricid ``loco'', C. concholepas, inChile and Peru; strombid conchs, Strombusspp., in the Caribbean, and abalone, Haliotis spp., in California and the west coastof the Baja California peninsula; (2) Asia andOceania, with the dominate abalone fishery,mainly in Australia and New Zealand, and thehorned turban snail, Turbo truncatus, inJapan and Korea; (3) in Africa and Europe, thedominate species extracted are Haliotismidae, heavily fished in South Africa, and thecommon periwinkle, Littorina littorea,and the whelk Buccinum undatum, which areextracted in Europe. This review summarizes the fishery of abalonespecies in California and the west coast of theBaja California peninsula. We highlightoverfishing situations and the utilization ofadaptive management tools, such as those inoperation in Baja California, where small-scalefisher associations (cooperatives) havereceived exclusive access rights to abaloneextraction within specific fishing zones, since1936. We also review the abalone fishery inAustralia, and the use of IndividualTransferable Quotas (ITQs) and Total AllowableCommercial Catches (TACC), which have been inuse since the mid-1980's. We describe thegastropod fisheries in Chile, mainly C. concholepas, highlighting their economic andsocial importance. We provide information onthe evolution of catches and exports anddiscuss the development of novel managementadaptive tools, such as the implementation ofthe Benthic Regime for Extraction andProcessing (BREP), the introduction ofNon-Transferable Individual Quotas (NTIQs) andterritorial users rights for benthic fisheries,such as the Management and Exploitation Areas(MEAS). Finally, we present and discuss thenecessary steps for the sustainable managementof marine gastropods and other benthic resources.
Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 1, 2002
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