Publication details.


Author(s):J.F. Amengual-Ramis, M. Vázquez-Archdale, C. Cánovas-Pérez, B. Morales-Nin
Title:The artisanal fishery of the spiny lobster Palinurus elephas in CabreraNational Park, Spain: Comparative study on traditional and moderntraps with trammel netsJ
JCR Impact Factor:2.185
Abstract:tCabrera National Park is a Marine Protected Area (MPA) located in the South of Mallorca, Balearic Islands,Spain. It has a valuable ground fishery that includes several species of crustaceans of commercial interest,such as the European spiny lobster Palinurus elephas. Lobster traps, although permitted and even pro-moted by the park’s authorities, have been abandoned due to the higher efficiency and catch per uniteffort of the trammel nets. This study evaluates traditional and modern lobster trap designs to determinethe most suitable one as an alternative to trammel nets. The gear was first tested in an aquarium and con-sisted of a reed trap, a plastic trap and a metal trap, all three historically used in Mallorca, and a modernJapanese collapsible trap. By conducting behavioral observations and exposing 40 lobsters to the trapsit was found that the collapsible trap captured 20% of the lobster exposed to the trap, while the plastictrap only 10% and the reed and metal trap only 2.5% and 0%, respectively. In addition, experimental trialswere conducted in a fishing ground of Cabrera National Park using two 450 m long strings of traps. Eachstring was composed of 30 collapsible traps or 30 plastic traps, with traps spaced at 15 m intervals alongthe line. Lobster catches were 24 (0.8 lobster/450 m) in the plastic traps, but only 9 (0.3 lobster/450 m)in the collapsible ones. When considering that the minimum legal size for lobsters is larger than 9 cmcarapace length (CL), only 9 lobster (0.3 lobster/450 m) could be landed after deploying 1800 traps, andall of them coming from plastic ones. To compare the effectiveness of traps with lobster trammel nets,14 fishing operations were carried out with a total of 5950 m of net deployed. Thirty-three lobsters werecaptured (2.37 lobster/450 m) in the nets, of which only 17 reached commercial size (1.22 lobster/450 m).Although the collapsible trap has caught more lobsters in the aquarium compared to the plastic trap, theplastic trap performed better in the field. This appears to be due to the effects of bycatch species, particu-larly octopus. Our results stressed the necessity of implementing an evaluation of the lobster populationdynamics to design more efficient management measures. The fishers themselves recognize the need toan agreement for changing the paradigm from maximizing catches to maximizing profit.

Related staff

  • Beatriz Morales Nin