Operationalizing marine reserve design for rebuilding tropical fisheries (2016–2019)
Like many developing countries, Indonesia wishes to rebuild its coral reef fisheries which are heavily over-exploited. Marine reserves are seen as the primary tool because of their ability to allow fish populations to recover and replenish fished areas. However, because reserves remove fishing grounds, fish catches tend to decrease in the short-term while fish recover in reserves; a process that can take a decade. Loss of yield can be overly burdensome and result in abandonment of management. We develop practical reserve implementation strategies that maximize the scope for rebuilding fisheries while ensuring that short-term losses do not exceed tolerable levels. Our results will be implemented by government and inform UN policy.