Peruvian anchoveta as a telecoupled fisheries system


Andrew K. Carlson, William W. Taylor, Jianguo Liu, Ivan Orlic 

Journal or Book Title: Ecology and Society

Year Published: In press


Fisheries are coupled human and natural systems (CHANS) across distant places, yet fisheries research has generally focused on better understanding either fisheries ecology or human dimensions in a specific place, rather than their interactions over distances. As economic and ideational globalization accelerate, fisheries are becoming more globally connected via movements of fish products and fisheries finances, information, and stakeholders throughout the world. As such, there is a pressing need for systematic approaches to assess these linkages among global fisheries, their effects on ecosystems and food security, and their implications for fisheries science and sustainability. Use of the telecoupling framework is a novel and insightful method to systematically evaluate socioeconomic and environmental interactions among CHANS. Here, we apply the telecoupling framework to the Peruvian anchoveta (Engraulis ringens) fishery, the world’s largest single-species commercial fishery and a complex CHANS. The anchoveta fishery has diverse and significant telecouplings – socioeconomic and environmental interactions over distances – with the rest of the world, including fishmeal and fish oil trade, monetary flow, knowledge transfer, and movement of people. The use of the telecoupling framework reveals complex fishery dynamics such as feedbacks (e.g., profit maximization causing fishery overcapitalization) and surprises (e.g., stock collapse) resulting from local and long-distance ecological and socioeconomic interactions. The Peruvian anchoveta fishery illustrates how the telecoupling framework can be used to systematically assess the magnitude and diversity of local and distant fisheries interactions and thereby advance knowledge derived from traditional monothematic research approaches. Insights from the telecoupling framework provide a foundation from which to develop sustainable fisheries policy and management strategies across local, national, and international levels in a globalized world.