INTRODUCTION
AR Production Versus Aggregation Controversy
 

The use of artificial reef for fisheries enhancement purposes has been challenged by some academics. The controversy is known as the "aggregation/enhancement debate". The debate is centred on the question, "Does the addition of habitat, provided by an artificial reef, enhance a resource or cause it to be over-exploited?". Experience in the Philippines has shown that deployment of surface artificial reefs known as Fish Aggregating Devices (FADs), deployed to attract pelagic fishes, in an open access fisheries has encouraged overfishing by small-scale fishers. Academics nevertheless agree that bottom sited artificial reefs, if deployed to facilitate recruitment of juvenile fishes, emplaced in areas lacking hard bottom habitat and managed as "no-take" fisheries, can provide an excellent and pragmatic resource management tool to protect and enhance fisheries. In addition, there is no disputing artificial reef's ability to protect important spawning and nursery grounds from the damaging impacts of bottom trawling. It is an important low cost enforcement tool in our marine parks where bottom trawling is prohibited.

 

 

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