Global conference: Seeds of Change

Theme: Gender Equality Through Agricultural Research for Development

Seeds of Change Conference is an interdisciplinary gender conference for researchers and practitioners in all fields of agriculture & fisheries (including food/commodity/cash crops, subsistence/semi-subsistence sectors, supply chains, forestry, aquaculture, and water management) which is jointly funded by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research, CGIAR Collaborative Platform for Gender Research and University of Canberra.

Rotational zoning systems in multi-species sea cucumber fisheries

Rotational zoning systems (RZSs) have been applied as a spatial management tool for fisheries in developed countries. Fishing grounds are divided into numerous plots and assigned a cyclical periodicity for harvest. This is a distinct spatial management measure that differs from more common measures in the tropics, like periodic closures or marine protected areas. We find that biological prerequisites for rotational closures are tenuous for many tropical reef species, and they are likely to put stocks of threatened species at further risk.

An ecosystem approach to small-scale fisheries through participatory diagnosis in four tropical countries

Participatory diagnosis is an approach to identify, prioritize and mobilise around factors that constrain or enable effective governance and management in small-scale fisheries. Diagnostic frameworks are mostly designed and used for systematic scientific analysis or impact evaluation. Through participation they also have potential to guide contextually informed improvements to management in practice, including transitions to contemporary forms of governance like the ecosystem approach to fisheries (EAF).

Wastewater treatment for land-based aquaculture: improvements and value-adding alternatives in model systems from Australia

Settlement ponds are used to remove particulate and dissolved nutrients in Australian land-based aquaculture wastewater. At best, marine and brackish water settlement ponds reduce total suspended solids by 60%, but their efficiency is inconsistent. Functional improvements to nutrient removal systems are essential to provide uniform and predictable treatment of flow-through aquaculture wastewater. Furthermore, environmental regulation of discharge from intensive systems in Australia is increasing, providing the impetus to upgrade rudimentary single-step settlement pond systems.

Rotational harvesting is a risky strategy for vulnerable marine animals

Sea cucumber fisheries exemplify resource systems under intense exploitation pressure from lucrative Asian markets. Plagányi et al. (1) model the performance of rotational harvests of sea cucumbers on the Great Barrier Reef (GBR) and advocate it globally. The authors support their aim to evaluate management models but believe the tenets of the strategy are flawed, key model inputs bias the outputs, and inferences to other coastal fisheries are overreaching.

Preservation of genetic diversity in restocking of the sea cucumber Holothuria scabra investigated by allozyme electrophoresis

Population genetics analyses should be considered when releasing hatchery-produced juveniles of the sea cucumber Holothuria scabra when spawners from nonlocal populations are used. In New Caledonia, within-region genetic heterogeneity of H. scabra populations (examined through allozyme electrophoresis of 258 animals) indicated high gene flow between nine sites and F<sub>ST</sub> values dOld_ID not deviate significantly from zero.

Centrostephanus rodgersii

Centrostephanus rodgersii is ecologically important on southeastern Australian rocky reefs, where its grazing activity results in a mosaic of barrens and macroalgal habitats. The creation, persistence and demise of C. rodgersii barrens is a major ecological dynamic in this region. Affinity for shelter and nocturnal foraging underlie the mechanism of barrens formation by C. rodgersii. Centrostephanus rodgersii has undergone a range extension into Tasmania facilitated by larval transport in the Eastern Australia Current.

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