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The agreement was signed by the Vice Chancellor of the UCN, Elvira Badilla, and the president of the AIP, Osciel Velásquez

UCN will monitor harvest of demersal crustaceans in Coquimbo

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Thursday, July 11, 2019, 03:20 (GMT + 9)

The research will require joint work between fishing vessels and researchers from the university.

The Fisheries Area of the Department of Marine Biology of the Catholic University of the North (UCN) and the Association of Industrial Fishermen and Shipowners of the Fourth Region A.G. (AIP) have signed a collaboration agreement that will allow to know the current situation of demersal crustaceans, which live in marine depths between 150 and 500 m.

Another photo of the agreement

The background will serve as the basis for the sustainable management of these marine resources and, in addition, will provide information on the possible impacts of the fishing activities on other species.

The study program should coordinate the work carried out by the AIP fishing fleet, which operates between the regions of Coquimbo (IV Region) and Biobío.

The AIP has a sustainability certification granted in 2016 by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC).

"This is a very special case. These are the first industrial fisheries certified in Chile three years ago and they have already completed two audits after the MSC certification," said Enzo Acuña, an academic from the Department of Marine Biology at the UCN and leaderof the program.

 "Having this certification implies, in football terms so fashionable at the moment, change to the first division, and that means that there are permanently new and more demanding commitments to comply with the organization that certifies them," he added.

Acuña explained that with this agreement, they resume an activity they had pioneered with the AIP in 1997, when for five years the fleet was monitored, "from the fourth region on that occasion, to which the fleet of Quinteros is now added".

            

Some IPA fishing vessels mooring at Coquimbo port

Osciel Velásquez, president of the AIP, valued the agreement and described it as "unprecedented" for covering the entire area of operation of the fleet and incorporating the use of information from the satellite positioners of the ships, also highlighting the coordination that it must exist.

Fishing vessel belonging to the IPA uploads the fishing net on board  plenty of shrimp

The program will last in a first stage 12 months, renewable, and among its main objectives it seeks to:

  • characterize the space-time distribution of the fleet operations;
  • know the size structure and reproductive condition of the resources in the area and period of study;
  • characterize the accompanying fauna; and
  • establish interactions between the fisheries and some species of the accompanying fauna suggested in particular by MSC.

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