Transboundary Fisheries Science: Meeting the Challenges of Inland Fisheries Management in the 21st Century

Authors:  Stephen R. Midway, Tyler Wagner, Joseph D. Zydlewski, Brian J. Irwin, and Craig P. Paukert


Managing inland fisheries in the 21st century presents several obstacles, including the need to view fisheries from multiple spatial and temporal scales, which usually involves populations and resources spanning sociopolitical boundaries. Though collaboration is not new to fisheries science, inland aquatic systems have historically been managed at local scales and present different challenges than in marine or large freshwater systems like the Laurentian Great Lakes. Therefore, we outline a flexible strategy that highlights organization, cooperation, analytics, and implementation as building blocks toward effectively addressing transboundary fisheries issues. Additionally, we discuss the use of Bayesian hierarchical models (within the analytical stage), due to their flexibility in dealing with the variability present in data from multiple scales. With growing recognition of both ecological drivers that span spatial and temporal scales and the subsequent need for collaboration to effectively manage heterogeneous resources, we expect implementation of transboundary approaches to become increasingly critical for effective inland fisheries management.

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