Since ancient times, fishers have known about the natural tendency of pelagic fish, such as tuna, dolphin fish, sharks, marlins, etc., to gather around floating objects offshore. Technical progress in terms of making large nets after the mid-twentieth century made it possible to use this aggregating phenomenon on a larger scale around floating objects, first along coasts (Philippines, Indonesia) and then further out in the open ocean. It is currently estimated that 40% of worldwide tropical tuna catches (albacore, skipjack tuna, bigeye tuna) take place under these floating objects, commonly known by the initials FAD, i.e. Fish Aggregating Devices.
This tendency of large pelagics to aggregate has been used at two very different scales:
In coastal zones, by local fishers who moor FADS on bottoms with depths of 50 to 2500 metres to encourage tuna to gather in specific areas known to fishers for daily fishing expeditions. In such cases, FADs can be considered effective small-scale fisheries management tools, which make it possible to transfer fishing pressure away from the coasts towards the open ocean, thereby favouring the harvest of species (pelagics) that are less sensitive at that scale.
Out to sea, in the open ocean, by tuna purse seiners that use drifting FADs equipped with electronic location emitters, which allow large-scale tuna harvest operations. Given the catch volume they generate around the world in three oceans, massive use of drifting FADs should be subject to in-depth studies so as to better assess the potential impacts of this fishing technique in terms of the risks of overfishing and disturbing the balance of the ecosystems involved (the “ecological trap” hypothesis).
So, by pooling experience internationally, the Symposium will serve four main objectives:
1.Sharing knowledge to allow consistent and controlled development of moored FADs for the benefit of small-scale tropical island fisheries,
2.Gaining a better understanding and measurement of the risks brought about by the massive use of drifting FADs, at a large scale, by tuna purse seiner fleets.
3.Whatever the type of FAD, moored or drifting, better defining and implementing fishing techniques designed to avoid by-catch and accidental capture of sensitive marine species such as marine mammals, turtles and sharks,
4. Better understand why fish aggregate around floating objects and what are the consequences of the deployment of FADs on the ecology of species.
Information about the technology platform
Symposium «Tuna fisheries and FADs»
Tahiti, November 28
to December 2, 2011
The main objective of the International Symposium
"Tuna Fisheries and Fish Aggregating Devices", November 2011, in Tahiti,
is to review the status of the exploitation of large pelagic fish species
around FADs, on the basis of a regional synthesis for the three main oceans and
the Mediterranean Sea. FAD technology, fishing methods used around FADs, impact
on marine resources, biology of fish aggregation and the socio-economic impacts
of FAD programs, will be the main topics covered at the Symposium. This
conference will gather scientists, managers involved in the development of FAD
projects and Fishermen.
A technical platform will be specifically organized in
collaboration with the business cluster "Tahiti Fa'ahotu" for
suppliers of equipment and technology related to this activity in order to
present new products or services.
Interested companies can benefit from a dedicated area
within close proximity of the conference room, allowing privileged contacts
with all participants. A special session " technology platform " will
also be held in the evening, during the conference week.
This technology platform can only accommodate a limited
number of companies, thank you for sending your registration form
"Company" as soon as possible with your commitment to participate.
Instructions to authors
The outcomes of the conference
«Tuna Fisheries and FADs – Tahiti 2011 » will be released in several
-A DVD with all the PowerPoint
-A compendium of the abstracts – this will be
available before the conference;
-The conference proceedings which will include
most of the written contributions;
-A special issue of the scientific journal
“Aquatic Living Resources” which will include about 10 of the most
scientifically interesting papers.
PowerPoint presentations as well
as written contributions (full papers) will be given in electronic form (memo
stick or DVD) to the conference secretariat before the opening ceremony at the
Radisson Hotel (between 5pm, November 27, and 8am, November 28). Two
hard copies of written contributions (full papers) should also provided to the
All conference papers submitted, for publication in either the conference proceedings or the special issue of
the scientific journal “Aquatic Living Resources” (ALR), need to conform with
the following requirements: download
Session 1 – Artisanal Fisheries and moored FADs programs
Session 2 – Industrial fisheries on moored and drifting FADs
Session 3 – Understanding the phenomenon of aggregation
Session 4 – Ecosystem impacts of FADs
Session 5 – Socio-economic impacts of FADs
Session 6 – Posters
Steering committeeScientific Committee
Michel BlancMichel Blanc
Priscille FrogierLaurent Dagorn
Loïc GourmelenJean-Claude Gaertner
Pierre MeryPaul Gervain
Christian MorettiOlivier Guyader
Bruno PeaucellierMartin Hall
Tiare Penilla Y PerellaKim Holland
Mainui TanetoaDavid Itano
Marc TaquetBeatriz Morales-Nin
Bruno UgoliniLionel Reynal
Stephen Yen Kai SunMarc Taquet
Hélène Gueguen Alain Fonteneau
Thissymposiumisco-organizedbyIfremer(French Research InstituteforExploitation ofthe Sea)andtheFisheries Department.