Amazon fisheries

Working with our partners IPAM, NAEA/UFPA and the Federal Universities of Rondonia and Tocantis, we investigate the role of fishing in the Amazon regional economy, the effects of lake management agreements on fisheries productivity, and the impacts of hydroelectric dams and land use change on Amazon fisheries.

The overall economic importance of the Amazon fisheries sector is far greater than previously realized. This provides strong policy-level incentives for the conservation of fisheries and the habitats upon which they depend. There is a high degree of regional differentiation in fleet characteristics of the commercial fishery, and the relative importance of commercial and subsistence-oriented fisheries.Fishing is the dominant source of income in varzea households. However, fishing is subsistence-oriented and there is little indication that households substitute fishing for other activities even when returns are high. Hence it is unlikely that fisheries management initiatives will reduce reliance on other activities that may be more damaging to the varzea environment. Empirical data show that co-management agreements are effective at increasing productivity of managed lakes, at least in the short term. Modelling studies suggest that such increases will be at least partially compensated by reduced productivity in the river fisheries. The expansion and further development of co-management initiatives was seen as crucial to safeguarding the productivity of the fishery in the face of possible market expansion, despite the limited overall effectiveness of such measures under current conditions. By providing a transparent and rigorous analysis of management issues, the projects have fostered a constructive dialogue on the future development of Amazon fisheries, and their role in the conservation of floodplain habitats. Our work on Amazon fisheries has been supported by the Darwin Initiative (UK), the Fisheries Society of the British Isles, CAPES/CNPq and the University of Florida Water Institute.

Mintzer, V.J., Schmink, M., Lorenzen, K. & Frazer, T.K. Martin A.R., da Silva V.M.F (2015) Attitudes and behaviors toward Amazon River dolphins (Inia geoffrensis) in a sustainable use protected area. Biodiversity and Conservation 24: 247-269. PDF

Mintzer, V.J., Martin A.R., da Silva V.M.F, Barbour, A.B., Lorenzen, K. & Frazer, T.K. (2013) Effect of illegal harvest on apparent survival of Amazon River dolphins (Inia geoffrensis). Biological Conservation 153: 280-286. PDF

Almeida, O., Lorenzen, K. & McGrath, D.G. (2009) Fishing agreements in the lower Amazon: for gain and restraint. Fisheries Management and Ecology 16: 61-67. PDF

Martelo, J., Lorenzen, K., Crossa, M. & McGrath, D.G. (2008) Habitat associations of exploited fish species in the Lower Amazon river-floodplain system. Freshwater Biology 53: 2455-2464. PDF

Lorenzen, K., Almeida, O., Arthur, R., Garaway, C. & Nguyen Khoa, S. (2006) Aggregated yield and fishing effort in multi-species fisheries: an empirical analysis. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 63: 1334-1343. PDF

Almeida, O., Lorenzen, K., McGrath, D. & Amaral, L. (2006) O setor de pesca na economia regional. In: Almeida, O. (Ed.) Manejo de Pesca na Amazônia Brasileira. São Paulo: Peirópolis. pp. 25-36.

Almeida, O., Lorenzen, K. & McGrath, D. (2006) A frota comercial pesqueira na Amazônia e o co-manejo no Baixo Amazonas. In: Almeida, O. (Ed.) Manejo de Pesca na Amazônia Brasileira. São Paulo: Peirópolis. pp. 37-50.

Almeida, O., Lorenzen, K. & McGrath, D. (2006) Pescadores rurais de pequena escala e o co-manejo no Baixo Amazonas. In: Almeida, O. (Ed.) Manejo de Pesca na Amazônia Brasileira. São Paulo: Peirópolis. pp. 51-72.

Lorenzen, K., Almeida, O. & Azevedo, C. (2006) Interações entre a pesca comercial e a de subsistência no Baixo Amazonas: utilizando um modelo bio-econômico. In: Almeida, O. (Ed.) Manejo de Pesca na Amazônia Brasileira. São Paulo: Peirópolis. pp. 73-94.

Almeida, O.T. & Lorenzen, K. & McGrath, D.G. (2004) The fisheries sector in the Amazon regional economy. Proceedings of the Second International Large Rivers Symposium. In: Welcomme, R.L. (Ed.) Proceedings of the 2nd International Large Rivers Symposium. Phnom Penh/Rome: Mekong River Commission/FAO. PDF

Almeida, O.T., Lorenzen, K. & McGrath, D.G. (2003) Commercial fishing in the Brazilian Amazon: regional differentiation in fleet characteristics and efficiency. Fisheries Management and Ecology 10: 109-115. PDF

Lorenzen, K., Almeida, O. & McGrath, D.G. (2002) Fisheries management for biodiversity conservation in the Brazilian Amazon. Final Report to the Darwin Initiative, DEFRA. 36 pp. PDF

Almeida, O.T., Lorenzen, K. & McGrath, D.G. (2002) Oficina de Politicas Pesqueiras para o Baixo Amazonas. IPAM, Santarem, Brazil. 28 pp. PDF