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    Description

    Several keynote speakers at the fourth World Fisheries Congress emphasized the importance of understanding ecosystem processes if we are to effectively reconcile fisheries with conservation. Nowhere is this more important than in watershed management. Watershed processes determine the properties of freshwater ecosystems and thereby regulate the productivity of local fisheries, as well as other fisheries whose target species spend part of their life cycles in freshwater ecosystems. Fish are but one of many natural resources that compose the spectrum of ecological "goods and services" watersheds provide (drinking water, irrigation, hydroelectric power, water for industrial processes, and others) and, as such, are subject to inevitable tradeoffs and compromises that accompany different interests with competing water needs. In watersheds, reconciling fisheries with conservation means not only balancing exploitation with the need for conserving the long-term viability of fish populations, it also means balancing the aquatic ecosystem requirements of fish with other societal needs for water. Oral and poster presenters in the watershed session offered a wide range of ideas on how these balances might be achieved.

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    Citation

    Bisson, Peter A. 2007. The role of watersheds in reconciling fisheries with conservation. American Fisheries Society Symposium. 49: 1839-1841

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