Trophic-level modelling of the coastal waters of the northern Bay of Bengal, West Bengal, India

Das, Isha and Hazra, Sugata and Das, Sourav and Giri, Sandip and Chanda, Abhra and Maity, Sourav and Ghosh, Shubhadeep (2018) Trophic-level modelling of the coastal waters of the northern Bay of Bengal, West Bengal, India. Fisheries Research, 84. pp. 995-1008.

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    An ecosystem model was constructed for the northern Bay of Bengal (nBoB) using Ecopath (version 6.4.4). The model covered an area of 18,500 km2. There were 32 functional groups in the model including the non-living group, detritus. Trophic levels (TLs) for individual groups ranged from 1.0 to 4.22. Ecotrophic efficiency for most of the small pelagic fishes was found to be greater than 0.7. For hilsa it was 0.853, indicating high exploitation of this fish within the system. The nBoB was estimated to be a low ascendancy area (~ 19.2%) with a system overhead of 80.8%, which indicates system stability and a certain maturity. The total system throughput and the total primary production/total respiration estimated for the study area indicate that nBoB is a maturing ecosystem. The mean TL of the catch for the study area was 3.115. The results indicate that the nBoB system is still in a developing stage. The low mean TL of the catch indicates fishing practices targeting fish of lower TLs in the system. In the long run, this may cause fishing down the food web, which will eventually lead to declining catches. These results indicate that present fishing practices are unsustainable for the nBoB ecosystem.

    Item Type: Article
    Uncontrolled Keywords: Trophic models; Ecopath; Ecosystem maturity; Network analysis; Unsustainable fishing
    Subjects: Marine Fisheries > Analytical models
    Fish and Fisheries > Fisheries management
    Marine Fisheries > Trophic Modelling
    Divisions: CMFRI-Visakhapatnam
    Depositing User: Arun Surendran
    Date Deposited: 03 Jun 2020 06:04
    Last Modified: 03 Jun 2020 06:04

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