The 78-metre (256-foot) Danish fisheries research vessel Dana.

Fisheries science is the academic discipline of managing and understanding fisheries.[1] It is a multidisciplinary science, which draws on the disciplines of limnology, oceanography, freshwater biology, marine biology, meteorology, conservation, ecology, population dynamics, economics, statistics, decision analysis, management, and many others in an attempt to provide an integrated picture of fisheries.[2][3] In some cases new disciplines have emerged, as in the case of bioeconomics and fisheries law. Because fisheries science is such an all-encompassing field, fisheries scientists often use methods from a broad array of academic disciplines.[4][5] Over the most recent several decades, there have been declines in fish stocks (populations) in many regions along with increasing concern about the impact of intensive fishing on marine and freshwater biodiversity.[6]

Fisheries science is typically taught in a university setting, and can be the focus of an undergraduate, master's or Ph.D. program. Some universities offer fully integrated programs in fisheries science. Graduates of university fisheries programs typically find employment as scientists, fisheries managers of both recreational and commercial fisheries, researchers, aquaculturists, educators, environmental consultants and planners, conservation officers, and many others.[7]

Fisheries research

Because fisheries take place in a diverse set of aquatic environments (i.e., high seas, coastal areas, large and small rivers, and lakes of all sizes), research requires different sampling equipment, tools, and techniques. For example, studying trout populations inhabiting mountain lakes requires a very different set of sampling tools than, say, studying salmon in the high seas. Ocean fisheries research vessels (FRVs) often require platforms which are capable of towing different types of fishing nets, collecting plankton or water samples from a range of depths, and carrying acoustic fish-finding equipment. Fisheries research vessels are often designed and built along the same lines as a large fishing vessel, but with space given over to laboratories and equipment storage, as opposed to storage of the catch. In addition to a diverse set of sampling gear, fisheries scientists often use scientific techniques from many different professional disciplines.[8]

Other important areas of fisheries research are population dynamics,[9] economics,[10] social studies [11] and genetics.[12]

Notable contributors

See also: Notable ichthyologists and List of marine biologists

Members of this list meet one or more of the following criteria: 1) Author of widely cited peer-reviewed articles on fisheries, 2) Author of major reference work in fisheries, 3) Founder of major fisheries journal, museum or other related organisation 4) Person most notable for other reasons who has also worked in fisheries science.

Contributor Nationality Born Died Contribution
Baird, Spencer F. American 1823 1887 Founding scientist of the United States Fish Commission.[13] U.S. Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries from 1871 to 1887.
Baranov, Fedor I. Russian 1886 1965 Baranov has been called the grandfather of fisheries population dynamics. The Baranov catch equation of 1918 is perhaps the most used equation in fisheries modelling.[14]
Beverton, Ray English 1922 1985 Fisheries biologist known for the Beverton–Holt model (with Sidney Holt), credited with being one of the founders of fisheries science[15]
Christensen, Villy Danish - Fisheries scientist and ecosystem modeller, known for his work on the development of Ecopath
Cobb, John N. American 1868 1930 Founder of the first college of fisheries in the United States, the University of Washington College of Fisheries, in 1919
Cooke, Steven J. Canadian 1974 Academic known for contributions to recreational fisheries science, inland fisheries and Conservation Physiology
Cushing, David English 1920 2008 Fisheries biologist, who is credited with the development of the match/mismatch hypothesis
Everhart, W. Harry American 1918 1994 Fisheries scientist, educator, administrator and author of several widely used fisheries texts[16]
Froese, Rainer German 1950 - Known for his work on the development and coordination of FishBase
Goode, G. Brown American 1851 1896 Ichthyologist who organized and administered the biological and fishery development research of the United States Fish Commission and ordered and developed the taxonomic and ichthyologic work of both the Fish Commission and the Smithsonian Institution. U.S. Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries from 1887 to 1888.[17]
Graham, Michael English 1889 1972 Known for his Great Law of Fishing, that “Fisheries that are unlimited become unprofitable.”
Green, Seth American 1817 1888 Pioneer in fish farming who established the first fish hatchery in the United States
Gunter, Gordon American 1909 1998 Pioneer in fisheries research in the northern Gulf of Mexico
Halver, John American 1922 2012 His pioneering work on the nutritional needs of fish led to modern methods of fish farming and fish feed production. He has been called the father of fish nutrition.[18][19]
Hempel, Gotthilf German 1929 - Marine biologist and oceanographer, and co-founder of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research
Herwig, Walther German 1838 1912 Lawyer and promoter of high seas fishing and research
Chaudhuri, Hiralal Indian 1921 2014 Father of induced breeding of the Carp and also the pioneer of Blue revolution.[20] Fisheries biologist with strong contributions in fisheries management.
Hilborn, Ray Canadian 1947 - Fisheries biologist with strong contributions in fisheries management
Hjort, Johan Norwegian 1869 1948 Known for research to determine why northern European fish populations fluctuate in abundance[21]
Hofer, Bruno German 1861 1916 Fishery scientist credited with being the founder of fish pathology
Holt, Sidney English 1926 2019 Fisheries biologist known for the Beverton–Holt model (with Ray Beverton), credited with being one of the founders of fisheries science
Kils, Uwe German - Marine biologist specializing in planktology. Inventor of the ecoSCOPE
Kyle, H. M. Scottish 1872 1951 Ichthyologist specializing in fisheries science and one of the earliest identifiers of the concept of overfishing[22]
Lackey, Robert T. Canadian 1944 - Fisheries scientist and political scientist known for his work involving the role of science in policy making[23]
Larkin, Peter A. Canadian 1924 1996 Fisheries scientist known for his critical remarks on the concept of MSY
Lee, Rosa M. Welsh 1884 1976 One of the first UK women employed as a fisheries scientist. Known for "Rosa Lee's phenomenon," in which size-selective fishing mortality reduces the average size of older age classes[24]
Lubchenco, Jane American 1947 Known for both her academic research in fisheries and related fields as well as policies implemented during her time as head of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Margolis, Leo Canadian 1927 1997 Parasitologist and head of the Pacific Biological Station in Nanaimo, British Columbia
McDonald, Marshall American 1835 1895 Fisheries scientist and fish culturist who invented the fish ladder and of a number of fish-hatching apparatuses. U.S. Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries from 1888 to 1895.
McKay, R. J. Australian Biologist and a specialist in translocated freshwater fishes
Murphy, Garth I. American 1922 2001 Fisheries oceanographer known for his work on the dynamics of Pacific sardine and on the importance of a broad age structure as a bed-hedging strategy in variable environments.
Myers, Ransom A. Canadian 1952 2007 Fisheries biologist best known for his work assessing the status of ocean fish populations[25]
Pauly, Daniel French / Canadian 1946 Prominent fisheries scientist, known for his work studying human impacts on global fisheries
Pitcher, Tony J. - Known for work on the impacts of fishing, management appraisals and the shoaling behavior of fish
Rice, Michael A. American 1955 - Known for work on molluscan fisheries
Ricker, Bill Canadian 1908 2001 Fisheries biologist, known for the Ricker model, credited with being one of the founders of fisheries science
Ricketts, Ed American 1897 1948 A colourful marine biologist and philosopher who introduced ecology to fisheries science.[26]
Roberts, Callum - Marine conservation biologist, known for his work on the role marine reserves play in protecting marine ecosystems
Rosenthal, Harald German 1937 - Hydrobiologist known for his work in fish farming and ecology
Safina, Carl American 1955 - Author of several writings on marine ecology and the ocean
Sars, Georg Ossian Norwegian 1837 1927 Marine biologist credited with the discovery of a number of new species and known for his analysis of cod fisheries
Schaefer, Milner Baily American 1912 1970 Notable for work on the population dynamics of fisheries
Schreck, Carl American 1944 - Fisheries scientist and endocrinologist known for his research on Pacific salmon
Schweder, Tore Norwegian 1943 - Statistician whose work includes the assessment of marine resources
Sette, Oscar Elton American 1900 1972 Pioneered the integration of fisheries biology with oceanography and meteorology to create fisheries oceanography and modern fisheries science.
Shimada, Bell M. American 1922 1958 Notable for study of tuna stocks in the equatorial Pacific Ocean.
Smith, Hugh M. American 1865 1941 Ichthyologist who directed the United States Fish Commission's scientific research from 1897 to 1903 and served as its deputy commissioner from 1903 to 1913. U.S. Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries from 1913 to 1922. First director general of Thailand′s Department of Fisheries.
Sumaila, Ussif Rashid Nigerian - Notable for his analysis of the economic aspects of fisheries
Suttkus, Royal D. American 1920 2009 Founder of the Royal D. Suttkus Fish Collection, housed at Tulane University
Utter, Fred M. American 1931 - Characterised by NOAA as the founding father of fishery genetics, he has been influential in marine conservation[27]
von Bertalanffy, Ludwig Austrian 1901 1972 In fisheries, best known for the von Bertalanffy function[28]
Walters, Carl American 1944 - Biologist known for his work involving fisheries stock assessments, the adaptive management concept, and ecosystem modeling


Some journals about fisheries are

Professional societies

See also



  1. ^ Lackey, Robert (2005). "Fisheries: History, Science, and Management". In Lehr, Jay; Keeley, Jack (eds.). Water Encyclopedia. Wiley. pp. 121–129. doi:10.1002/047147844X.sw249. ISBN 047147844X.
  2. ^ Leal, Donald; Maharaj, Vishwanie (2009). Evolving approaches to managing marine recreational fisheries. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books. ISBN 978-0-7391-2802-2. OCLC 232358037.
  3. ^ Hubert, Wayne A.; Quist, Michael C. (2010). Inland fisheries management in North America (3rd ed.). Bethesda, Md.: American Fisheries Society. ISBN 978-1-934874-16-5. OCLC 650960010.
  4. ^ Schreck, Carl B.; Moyle, Peter B., eds. (2002). Methods for Fish Biology (Reprinted ed.). Bethesda, MD: American Fisheries Society. p. 704. ISBN 091323558X.
  5. ^ Sass, Greg S.; Allen, Micheal S., eds. (2014). Foundations of Fisheries Science. Bethesda, MD: American Fisheries Society. p. 801. ISBN 978-1-934874-37-0.
  6. ^ Hart, Paul J.B.; Reynolds, John D., eds. (2002). Handbook of Fish Biology and Fisheries: Fish Biology, Volume 1. Wiley-Blackwell. p. 432. ISBN 9780632054121.
  7. ^ "Careers in Fisheries". American Fisheries Society. 2004. Retrieved May 19, 2020.
  8. ^ Zale, Alexander; Parrish, Donna; Sutton, Trent, eds. (2012). Fisheries Techniques (Third ed.). Bethesda, MD: American Fisheries Society. p. 1009. ISBN 978-1934874295.
  9. ^ Lorenzen, Kai (2005-01-29). Beddington, J. R.; Kirkwood, G. P. (eds.). "Population dynamics and potential of fisheries stock enhancement: practical theory for assessment and policy analysis". Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 360 (1453): 171–189. doi:10.1098/rstb.2004.1570. ISSN 0962-8436. PMC 1636107. PMID 15713596.
  10. ^ Anderson, Lee G. (2004). The economics of fisheries management (Rev. social studies enl. ed.). Caldwell, N.J.: Blackburn Press. ISBN 1-930665-98-9. OCLC 57533583.
  11. ^ Briand, F., ed. (2018). Engaging marine scientists and fishers to share knowledge and perceptions - Early lessons. Paris, Monaco: CIESM Publishers. p. 218. ISSN 1726-5886.
  12. ^ Hallerman, Eric M. (2003). Population genetics : principles and applications for fisheries scientists. Bethesda, Md.: American Fisheries Society. ISBN 1-888569-27-1. OCLC 51979755.
  13. ^ "NOAA History - Giants of History - Spencer Fullerton Baird". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 2020.
  14. ^ Quinn, Terrance J. II (2003). "Ruminations on the development and future of population dynamics models in fisheries". Natural Resource Modeling. 16 (4): 341–392. CiteSeerX doi:10.1111/j.1939-7445.2003.tb00119.x. S2CID 153420994.
  15. ^ Cushing, D. H.; Edwards, R.W. (1996). "Raymond John Heaphy Beverton, C. B. E. 29 August 1922-23 July 1995". Biographical Memoirs of Fellows of the Royal Society. 42: 24–38. doi:10.1098/rsbm.1996.0003. JSTOR 770195.
  16. ^ Baer, Richard; Youngs, William; Oglesby, Ray (1994). "Watson Harry Everhart - June 5, 1918 - October 1, 1994" (PDF). Cornell University Faculty Memorial Statement.
  17. ^ NOAA 200th Top Tens: History Makers: George Brown Goode: Eminent 19th Century Fish Scientist Accessed 13 November 2022
  18. ^ American Fisheries Society, National Fish Culture Hall of Fame, Spearfish, S.D. 2000
  19. ^ "SAFS Newsletter Spring-Summer 2013: In Memoriam-John e. Halver and Dayton Lee Alverson". Archived from the original on 2014-07-15. Retrieved 2014-07-17..
  20. ^ Sharma, Anil; Mohanty, Bimal (2015-01-25). "Hiralal Chaudhuri (1921-2014) - PERSONAL NEWS". Current Science. 108: 286–287.
  21. ^ Aksnes, Dag W.; Browman, Howard I. (2014). "Johan Hjort's impact on fisheries science: a bibliometric analysis". ICES Journal of Marine Science. 71 (8): 2012–2016. doi:10.1093/icesjms/fsu147.
  22. ^ Paul J.B. Hart; John D. Reynolds, eds. (2008). Handbook of Fish Biology and Fisheries: Fisheries. John Wiley & Sons. pp. 78–79. ISBN 978-0470693131.
  23. ^ Krisch, Joshua A. (2017). "The Science of Science Advocacy". The Scientist.
  24. ^ Kraak, Sarah B. M.; Haase, Stefanie; Minto, Cóilín; Santos, Juan (2019). "The Rosa Lee phenomenon and its consequences for fisheries advice on changes in fishing mortality or gear selectivity". ICES Journal of Marine Science. 76 (7): 2179–2192. doi:10.1093/icesjms/fsz107.
  25. ^ Sullivan, Patricia (2007). "Biologist Ransom A. Myers, 54; Warned of Overfishing in Oceans". Washington Post.
  26. ^ Eric Enno Tamm (13 October 2005). "Ed Ricketts' death, 50 years ago last week, preceded that of Cannery Row by only a few months" (PDF). Monterey County Weekly.
  27. ^ History Makers: Honorable Mentions NOAA. Updated: 19 July 2012. Retrieved 20 August 2014.
  28. ^ Katsanevakis, Stelios; Maravelias, Christos D. (2008). "Modelling fish growth: multi‐model inference as a better alternative to a priori using von Bertalanffy equation". Fish and Fisheries. 9 (2): 178–187. doi:10.1111/j.1467-2979.2008.00279.x.
  29. ^ "Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences". Canadian Science Publishing.