It would be no exaggeration to say that some of Abu Dhabi's fisheries are in crisis. Fish stocks fell by more than two thirds from 2002 to 2013. A number of key species are heavily overexploited and stocks need to be rebuilt.
Nearly half the total catch is landed by boats from other Emirates, often unaware of the relevant laws. Existing techniques net fish that are not mature enough to breed, which contributes to the decline.
EAD is in the course of implementing a number of changes:
- developing awareness programs among commercial and recreational fishermen
- reviewing and enhancing the regulatory and enforcement framework
- imposing a ban on catching certain species during spawning season
Main sources of threat: Overfishing, inappropriate equipment and methods, encroachment by non-Abu Dhabi fishing fleets
Current status: Hammour, Shari and Farshad – collapsed, eight other species – severely overexploited (note: taken from locally gathered statistics as IUCN listings are not available)
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