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The Ethnobiology of Traditional Fisheries: Bringing the Past into the Present

Posted by Laura Addicott on April 14, 2015 in News

Fish-WIKS member, Dr. Dana Lepofsky of Simon Fraser University, and her colleague, Dr. Valentina Savo, will present a session entitled, The Ethnobiology of Traditional Fisheries:  Bringing the Past into the Present, at the Society of Ethnobiology meeting in Santa Barbara in May 2015.

For millennia, coastal peoples around the world have relied on marine resources and ecosystems to sustain them.  Many have developed complex systems of resource management and use that have encouraged social and ecological resilience.  Today, changing ocean conditions, resulting from ocean warming, acidification, over-fishing and pollution, coupled with changes in the social and economic contexts in which fisheries are conducted, threaten the resilience of traditional fisheries. At the same time, resource managers and social and natural scientists are increasingly aware of both the value of the knowledge encompassed within these fishery systems and the dearth of documentation about these systems. The papers in the session cover a range of topics associated with traditional fisheries with a focus on situating traditional fisher knowledge and practice within current social and ecological contexts.

“Fisheries science is really starting to recognize the importance of local and traditional knowledge”, says Dr. Lepofsky.