Monitoring of behaviour of coastal species with acoustic telemetry (TAC project)

Food security or the mitigation of climate change are ecosystem services of coastal regions of vital importance for socioeconomic well-being. There are multiple anthropogenic and environmental pressures that can affect the sustainability of resources. Marine protected areas (MPAs) become a valuable tool to promote the sustainable exploitation of resources by preserving genetic diversity, increasing biomass and mitigating changes in fisheries-induced changes. The effectiveness of an MPA depends on the distribution and behavior of the species that inhabit it. The correct management of an MPA should include monitoring programs that measure its effectiveness. But there are few examples of MPAs that include behavioral indicators in their follow-up. It is a scientific challenge to develop tools to evaluate the effectiveness of the MPA based on knowledge of the behavior patterns of the species.

From this perspective, our main objective is to develop a monitoring system to evaluate the performance of a marine protected area based on the behavior of the species object of protection. The achievement of this main objective comprises the following secondary objectives:

SO1. Depict movement patterns, use of space and coastal behavior in the MPA based on biological and environmental parameters.
SO2. Development of a non-invasive method of estimating natural and fishing mortality based on movement and behavior patterns.
SO3. Development of a assessment methodology of MPA effectiveness.
SO4. Provide advice on how to integrate the dimension of animal behavior into the design and adaptive management of a marine protected area.
SO5. Dissemination of the role of MPAs in the management of coastal zones.

The project is funded with the collaboration of the Fundación Biodiversidad, within the Ministerio de Transición Ecológica, through the Programa Pleamar, cofunded by the FEMP.

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