SUMMARY

SUMMARY

IDENTIFICATION

SCIENTIFIC NAME(s)

Coryphaena hippurus

SPECIES NAME(s)

Common dolphinfish, Mahi-mahi

The stock structure of the species is not truly known at a global scale.  Díaz-Jaimes et al. (2010) studied the inter-oceanic divergence of Atlantic, Indian, Pacific and Mediterranean populations but the genetic differentiation is not conclusive. The population structure in the eastern Pacific Ocean is unclear (IATTC 2014). Here, the separation of the Eastern Pacific and the Western Central Pacific stocks is based in the genetic heterogeneity found in the Pacific Ocean by Rocha-Olivares et al (2006) and due to differences in fisheries and management.


ANALYSIS

Strengths
  • Mahi mahi are fast growing and tend to be resilient to fishing pressure.
  • The Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) has started a collaborative research plan for mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO).
  • Some information on catch rate trends for mahi mahi in the EPO is available.
  • The IATTC has conducted a stock assessment and Management Strategy Evaluation on mahi mahi in the EPO
  • The Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) has started a collaborative research plan for mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) and conducted a preliminary stock assessment.
  • There is some information about landings and catch rate trends available for this country.
  • There is a historical documented abundance of common dolphinfish in this area.
  • There is a Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) under conduction for the certification of the common dolphinfish longline fishery
Weaknesses
  • There are few to no management regulations at international or national levels.
  • There are no reference points in place so the status of mahi mahi in the EPO is currently unknown.
  • Longlines, which are used to target mahi mahi in the EPO, can have negative interactions with protected, endangered, or threatened (PET) species and information on these interactions and their impacts is limited.
  • IATTC requires only 5% observer coverage in the longline fleet. Mahi mahi are also incidentally captured in purse seine fisheries operating in EPO.
  • There is no management plan set at the national or international level for common dolphinfish
  • There are no reference points in place to evaluate the status of common dolphinfish in the area
  • Extensive and reliable information are needed to condcut a comprehensive stock assessment of common dolphinfish in the area
  • The fishing gear used (longlines) interacts with some Endangered, Threatened and Protected (ETP) species and information on interactions is lacking
  • More information regarding bycatch and juveniles should be taken from artisanal and medium-sized fleet.

FISHSOURCE SCORES

Management Quality:

Management Strategy:

< 6

Managers Compliance:

≥ 6

Fishers Compliance:

< 6

Stock Health:

Current
Health:

NOT YET SCORED

Future Health:

NOT YET SCORED


RECOMMENDATIONS

RETAILERS & SUPPLY CHAIN
  • Work with IATTC Members and Cooperating Non-Members (CPCs) to: 
    • Immediately adopt formal limit and target reference points and develop a harvest control rule.
    • Support continued work towards a full stock assessment of mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean including improved catch, effort, discard and biological data reporting for the target species at the national and IATTC level, including through measures such as electronic logbooks from all fleet segments of the fishery and for the fishery north of the equator.
    • Support continuation of improved catch, effort, and biological data reporting for bycatch species at the national and IATTC level, including through measures such as electronic logbooks from all fleet segments of the fishery and for the fishery north of the equator.
    • Strengthen compliance processes and make information on non-compliance public and continue to provide evidence of compliance with all IATTC Conservation and Management Measures in a timely manner.
    • Increase compliance with the mandatory minimum 5% longline observer coverage rates by identifying and correcting non-compliance. Aim to increase longline observer coverage rates to a minimum of 20% within 5 years and with a long-term goal of 100% (which could include electronic and human observers) on vessels greater than 20 meters length.
  • Identify and mandate the use of best practice bycatch mitigation techniques such as those outlined in the Best Practices in Tuna Longline Fisheries Report
  • Ensure all products are traceable back to legal sources. Verify source information and full chain traceability through traceability desk audits or third party traceability certification. For fisheries without robust traceability systems in place, invest in meaningful improvements to bring the fisheries and supply chain in compliance with best practices.

FIPS

No related FIPs

CERTIFICATIONS

No related MSC fisheries

Fisheries

Within FishSource, the term "fishery" is used to indicate each unique combination of a flag country with a fishing gear, operating within a particular management unit, upon a resource. That resource may have a known biological stock structure and/or may be assessed at another level for practical or jurisdictional reasons. A fishery is the finest scale of resolution captured in FishSource profiles, as it is generally the scale at which sustainability can most fairly and practically be evaluated.

ASSESSMENT UNIT MANAGEMENT UNIT FLAG COUNTRY FISHING GEAR
Eastern Pacific Ocean IATTC Costa Rica Drifting longlines
Hooks and lines
Mechanized lines
Pole-lines hand operated
Ecuador Drifting longlines
Mechanized lines
Pole-lines hand operated
Guatemala Drifting longlines
Nicaragua Drifting longlines
Mechanized lines
Pole-lines hand operated
Panama Drifting longlines
Longlines
Mechanized lines
Pole-lines hand operated
Peru Drifting longlines

Analysis

OVERVIEW

Last updated on 11 June 2019

Strengths
  • Mahi mahi are fast growing and tend to be resilient to fishing pressure.
  • The Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) has started a collaborative research plan for mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO).
  • Some information on catch rate trends for mahi mahi in the EPO is available.
  • The IATTC has conducted a stock assessment and Management Strategy Evaluation on mahi mahi in the EPO
IATTC
Guatemala
Drifting longlines

Last updated on 8 January 2019

  • The Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) has started a collaborative research plan for mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) and conducted a preliminary stock assessment.
  • There is some information about landings and catch rate trends available for this country.
  • There is a historical documented abundance of common dolphinfish in this area.
  • There is a Fishery Improvement Project (FIP) under conduction for the certification of the common dolphinfish longline fishery
Weaknesses
  • There are few to no management regulations at international or national levels.
  • There are no reference points in place so the status of mahi mahi in the EPO is currently unknown.
  • Longlines, which are used to target mahi mahi in the EPO, can have negative interactions with protected, endangered, or threatened (PET) species and information on these interactions and their impacts is limited.
  • IATTC requires only 5% observer coverage in the longline fleet. Mahi mahi are also incidentally captured in purse seine fisheries operating in EPO.
IATTC
Guatemala
Drifting longlines

Last updated on 11 June 2019

  • There is no management plan set at the national or international level for common dolphinfish
  • There are no reference points in place to evaluate the status of common dolphinfish in the area
  • Extensive and reliable information are needed to condcut a comprehensive stock assessment of common dolphinfish in the area
  • The fishing gear used (longlines) interacts with some Endangered, Threatened and Protected (ETP) species and information on interactions is lacking
  • More information regarding bycatch and juveniles should be taken from artisanal and medium-sized fleet.
RECOMMENDATIONS

Last updated on 16 October 2018

Recommendations to Retailers & Supply Chain
  • Work with IATTC Members and Cooperating Non-Members (CPCs) to: 
    • Immediately adopt formal limit and target reference points and develop a harvest control rule.
    • Support continued work towards a full stock assessment of mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean including improved catch, effort, discard and biological data reporting for the target species at the national and IATTC level, including through measures such as electronic logbooks from all fleet segments of the fishery and for the fishery north of the equator.
    • Support continuation of improved catch, effort, and biological data reporting for bycatch species at the national and IATTC level, including through measures such as electronic logbooks from all fleet segments of the fishery and for the fishery north of the equator.
    • Strengthen compliance processes and make information on non-compliance public and continue to provide evidence of compliance with all IATTC Conservation and Management Measures in a timely manner.
    • Increase compliance with the mandatory minimum 5% longline observer coverage rates by identifying and correcting non-compliance. Aim to increase longline observer coverage rates to a minimum of 20% within 5 years and with a long-term goal of 100% (which could include electronic and human observers) on vessels greater than 20 meters length.
  • Identify and mandate the use of best practice bycatch mitigation techniques such as those outlined in the Best Practices in Tuna Longline Fisheries Report
  • Ensure all products are traceable back to legal sources. Verify source information and full chain traceability through traceability desk audits or third party traceability certification. For fisheries without robust traceability systems in place, invest in meaningful improvements to bring the fisheries and supply chain in compliance with best practices.

1.STOCK STATUS

STOCK ASSESSMENT

Last updated on 6 July 2018

The Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) conducted an exploratory stock assessment of mahi mahi in the Eastern Pacific Ocean in 2016 (Aires-da-Silva et al. 2016). The assessment was conducted using the Stock Synthesis model. The model assumed monthly time steps between 2007 and 2014 and included length specific information and catch data from Peru and Ecuador and catch rate series from Ecuador (Aires-da-Silva et al. 2016).

SCIENTIFIC ADVICE

Last updated on 11 June 2019

The status of mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean is uncertain because there are no reference points in place to assess the current biomass and fishing mortality rates against sustainable levels (Aires-da-Silva et al. 2016). Scientific advice related to management has not been provided but the IATTC Scientific Committee has recommended the IATTC staff continue working with countries to determine the stock status or mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean (Personnel Communication, IATTC SAC 2019).

CURRENT STATUS

Last updated on 6 July 2018

The current status of mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean is uncertain because reference points are not in place to assess the current biomass and fishing mortality rates against. There are yearly fluctuations in biomass of mahi mahi in the south eastern Pacific Ocean. Peaks in biomass are typically seen in fall and winter, declining to lower levels during May and June. Overall, the biomass of mahi mahi has remained stable during the modeled time period (2007-2014). Recruitment shows inter-annual variability. Fishing mortality estimates ranged from 0.53 to 0.85 between 2007 and 2014 (Aires-da-Silva et al. 2016).

2.MANAGEMENT QUALITY

MANAGEMENT
IATTC

There are curretly no management measures in place for mahi mahi in the eastern Pacific Ocean through the Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC). The status of mahi mahi is unknown in the eastern Pacific Ocean and therefore it is unknown if any recovery plans are needed. No recovery plans are in place.

Guatemala
Drifting longlines

Last updated on 8 January 2019

The only regulation for common dolphinfish in Guatemala is provided by the Dirección de Normatividad de la Pesca y Acuicultura (DIPESCA) in the Reglamento de la Ley General de Pesca y Acuicultura (Regulation of the Fishing and Aquaculture law, in English), in articles 27, 28, 29 and 30. First, Article 27 sets target family species: Coryphaenidae, Alopiidae, Carcharhinidae, Ginglymostomatidae, Lamnidae, Sphyrnidae and Triakidae, and considers all of them part of the same fishery; sharing common fishing zones and the same fishing gear. Article 28 says this fishery takes place in the Pacific Ocean, from 20 nautical miles onwards. On the other hand, article 29 describes the type of fishing vessels and some fishing gear characteristics associated with this fishery. It defines two types of vessels: small size vessels equipped with long-lines with a maximum of 1000 hooks and medium sized vessels, equipped with no more than 2000 hooks. Also indicated in both cases, hooks cannot be bigger than 1.5 inches. Finally, Article 30 established that bycatch cannot be more than 5% of the total catch expressed in the total number of individuals (Acuerdo Gubernativo 2005).

                                                                                                    

There is no total allowable capture in this fishery.

Recovery Plan

Currently, there is no recovery plan in place for the common dolphinfish in Guatemala, mainly due to the lack of knowledge related to the stock exploitation level.

COMPLIANCE
IATTC

There are no catch limits, quotas etc and no management measure to determine compliance with.

Guatemala

Last updated on 8 January 2019

There are no available statistics regarding illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and discards in the common dolphinfish fishery. However, there are quantifications regarding the incidental catch of common dolphinfish, which in 2016, was much larger than the targeted dolphinfish catch levels (MAGA 2016). There is a current initiative from the Guatemalan and other regional governments, to establish and develop a monitoring and surveillance center aimed at, among other things, fighting illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU)  fishing. This is called Centro de Seguimiento y Control Satelital de Embarcaciones Pesqueras (CSCS), which is under MAGA's management.

3.ENVIRONMENT AND BIODIVERSITY

BYCATCH
ETP Species

Last updated on 7 April 2015

The longline fisheries operating in the eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) that capture mahi mahi likely have incidental interactions with sea turtles.

Green, hawksbill, leatherback, loggerhead and olive ridley sea turtles have been reported as incidentally captured in longline fisheries operating in the EPO. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) classifies green, leatherback and loggerhead turtles as Endangered, hawksbill as Critically Endangered, and olive ridley as Vulnerable (www.iucn.org).

Marine mammal interactions are not common bycatch species in this fishery.

Several species of seabirds, including black-footed, laysan and waved albatross. Black-footed, laysan albatross are considered Near Threatened by the IUCN and waved albatross as Critically Endangered and may also be incidentally captured.

The Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission (IATTC) has put several management measures aimed at bycatch species into place. IATTC member countries are to implement an International Plan of Action for Seabirds. Two seabird mitigation methods are required on vessels larger than 20 m fishing in specific areas. A 3 year program to reduce the impact of fishing on sea turtles has been put into place. This plan requires reporting of any interaction and carrying of proper handling and release gears. Shark finning is banned (5% rule) and oceanic whitetip sharks are prohibited from being retained (IATTC 2011b)(IATTC 2011c)(IATTC 2005)(IAC 2012). 

IATTC
Guatemala
Drifting longlines

Last updated on 11 June 2019

There are no robust, up-to-date assessments, nor basic information available, about incidental capture of ETP species in Guatemala’s mahi-mahi (dorado) longline fishery. Although minimum 5% observer coverage is required on longline vessels operating in the IATTC convention area (IATTC 2011a), it is rarely achieved by cooperating parties. This issue applies to the Guatemala mahi-mahi (or dorado) surface drifting longline fishery as well. However, Guatemala has no vessels larger than 20m in length, which is the minimum size of vessels to which current IATTC regulations on observer coverage and bycatch reporting apply (IATTC 2011). This fishery overlaps with several shark, seabird, marine mammal, and sea turtle populations, some of which are currently low abundance and declining, which means that numerically low bycatch interactions can still have significant population impacts (Lewison et al. 2014). There is no quantitative information available about ETP bycatch for this Guatemalan mahi-mahi longline fishery via any means of assessment (e.g., on-board observers, interview-based assessments).

 Guatemalan longline fishing operations occur in a highly diverse area in terms of marine turtle regional management units (RMUs; (Wallace et al. 2010)), potentially overlapping with 5 different RMUs of two species, including Eastern Pacific leatherbacks, hawksbills, green turtles, and olive ridleys (arribada nesting RMU and solitary nesting RMU). Peak mahi-mahi fishing activities in Guatemala also apparently occur during peak sea turtle nesting season (September through March) (IATTC 2015). According to Lewison et al. (Lewison et al. 2004), longline fishing has contributed significantly to the decline of leatherback and loggerhead sea turtle populations in the eastern Pacific. These two species are both classified as Critically Endangered and Endangered, respectively (IUCN 2018). Pelagic longline fisheries are widely regarded as one of the main sources of fishing mortality for turtles (Lewison and Crowder 2007). However, there is exceedingly little data available on sea turtle interactions with Guatemalan dolphinfish fisheries (Hunter 2013). There are anecdotal reports of interactions with multiple sea turtle species including leatherbacks, olive ridleys, green turtles, and hawksbill, as well as seabirds (Stercorarius spp.) (CeDePesca 2013). According to CEDEPESCA (CEDEPESCA 2013), there are artisanal fleet reports regarding interactions between longlines and species like the green sea turtle (Chelonia mydas). The problem is that this information does not represent official statistical data.  No assessment of the impacts of this fishery on turtle populations has been conducted (Hunter 2013).

There are several national laws that forbid the hunting of sea turtles and protect endangered species in compliance with CITES (National Strategy for Conservation of Sea Turtles; Protected Areas Law (Decree 4-89) and its regulations (Government Agreement 759-90); Resolution of the Executive Secretary of the National Council of Protected Areas number 048/2000). Guatemala’s longline fishery targeting mahi-mahi apparently uses circle hooks (although not mandatory), which can decrease the frequency and severity of sea turtle bycatch in many cases ((Andraka et al. 2013); (Swimmer et al. 2017)), but have varying effects on sharks and other bycatch species(Gilman et al. 2016).

As of 2012, there were an average of 90 longline vessels in Guatemala that were catching twenty times the number of sharks than mahi-mahi per year (>562,000 vs >23,000 individuals), and two-hundred times the number of sharks than yellowfin and skipjack tuna over a 12-year period through 2012 (>6,000,000 vs >37,000) (CeDePesca 2013)). Shark species reportedly retained in the Guatemalan longline fishery include: silky shark Carcharhinus falciformis, pelagic thresher Alopias pelagicus, common thresher Alopias vulpinus, bigeye thresher Alopias superciliosus, blacktip shark Carcharhinus limbatus, bull shark Carcharhinus leucas, oceanic whitetip shark Carcharhinus longimanus, shortfin mako shark Isurus oxyrinchus, scalloped hammerhead Sphyrna lewini, smooth hammerhead shark Sphyrna zygaena, blue shark Prionace glauca, and nurse shark Ginglymostoma cirratum (CeDePesca 2013).

Several of these species qualify as Endangered or Vulnerable (17 species overall; e.g., scalloped hammerhead, common and bigeye thresher sharks, silky shark) or Near Threatened (25 species overall; e.g., shortfin mako) in the East Central Pacific (Kyne et al. 2012). According to research by López (Lopez 2005), the scalloped hammerhead (Sphyrna lewini) represents 11% of the Guatemalan common dolphinfish bycatch in longline fisheries. There is no stock assessment for scalloped hammerhead in the Eastern Pacific, although this species is considered endangered (Kyne et al. 2012). IUCN also considers scalloped hammerhead as an Endangered species and describes that fishing pressure due to pelagic longline fleets is high and a significant decline of this species has been documented. There is also concern over the fact that some catches in some areas are comprised entirely of juveniles. On the other hand, IUCN also says that the larger hammerhead shark (Sphyrna mokarran) is assessed as Critically Endangered in this region from which it has apparently virtually disappeared. In Guatemala there is not enough information to establish and develop management measures for shark species taken as bycatch.

CEDEPESCA (CEDEPESCA 2013) has described that there was an interaction recognized between the common dolphinfish fishery and seabirds species belonging to the genus Stercorarius. However, the impact on their stocks has not been thoroughly assessed. Mangel et al. (Mangel et al. 2013) mentioned that in Central America, surveys in Guatemala had shown that pink-footed shearwater (Puffinus creatopus) is caught incidentally.

Several regional measures are in place for ETP species apply to Guatemala. Existing IATTC resolutions require best practices for safe release and handling of sea turtles captured in purse seines and longlines, as well as mitigation of ETP species including marine turtles (IATTC 2007), seabirds (IATTC 2011), mobulid rays (IATTC 2015), various shark species (IATTC 2016), and specific resolutions for silky sharks (IATTC 2016)) and oceanic whitetip sharks (IATTC 2011). The Organization of the Fisheries and Aquaculture Sector of the Central American Isthmus (OSPESCA) approved a common regional finning regulation that took effect in January 2012 for the eight member countries, including Guatemala, which requires sharks to be landed with their fins still naturally attached (Kyne et al. 2012)

In addition, Guatemala became a member party of the Inter-American Convention on the Protection and Conservation of Sea Turtles (IAC) in 2008; the IAC charter forbids retention of sea turtles in fisheries operations. The IAC also has several resolutions including measures to mitigate bycatch of sea turtles, for which annual reports on compliance are supposed to be provided each year, although they usually do not include estimates of the number of incidentally captured individuals. However, Guatemala’s 2018 annual report to the IAC indicated that information on sea turtle bycatch in Guatemalan fisheries is not generated because there is no observer program or other assessment method in place currently (IAC 2018)

The extent to which Guatemala is able to comply with these resolutions in unclear. A recent review highlighted several obstacles to good governance of Guatemala’s marine resources, i.e., environmental legislation is weak, fragmented and mediated across multiple actors and stakeholders, and institutional capacity is low (Gonzalez-Bernat and Clifton 2017).

Other Species

Last updated on 7 April 2015

Eastern Pacific Ocean (EPO) longlines fisheries that capture mahi mahi tuna also likely capture a number of other species of fish, including billfish and other tuna species, and sharks.

Other common bycatch species in the longline fishery include blue and silky sharks, indo-Pacific sailfish, tuna and swordfish. Blue shark populations are currently healthy in the north Pacific region of the EPO but populations in the south Pacific appear to be in much worse condition. The current status of silky sharks, despite an assessment being conducted, is unknown in this region. The status of indo-Pacific sailfish is also uncertain. Swordfish populations are healthy in both the northern and southern region of the EPO {IATTC 2014b}.

IATTC
Guatemala
Drifting longlines

Last updated on 8 January 2019

According to research made by López (2005) (lopez 2005), between 2001 and 2003, the composition of the bycatch in longline fisheries targeting common dolphinfish in Guatemala were thresher sharks (Alopiassp.) 30% (vulnerable) (IUCN 2018), marlin (Makaira sp). 22% (vulnerable) (IUCN 2018), yellowfin tuna (Thunnusalbacares) 20% (near threatened) (IUCN 2018), scalloped hammerhead (Sphyrna lewini)11% (endangered) (IUCN 2018), blue shark (Prionaceglauca) 0.43% (near threatened) (IUCN 2018), tiger shark (Galeocerdocuvier) 0.1% (Near threatened) (IUCN 2018) and blacktip shark (Carcharhinuslimbatus) 0.08% (near threatened) (IUCN 2018).

 

According to Gonzalez-Bernat and Clifton (2017) (Gonzalez-Bernat and Clifton 2017), the industrial fleet operating with longlines also targets during different times: silky shark (Carcharinus falciformis), blacktip shark (Carcharhinus limbatus), whitenose shark (Nasolamia velox), scalloped hammerhead (Sphyrna lewini), smooth-hound (Mustelus spp.), blue shark (Prionace glauca), tiger shark (Galocerdo cuvier), nurse shark (Ginglymostoma cirratum), pelagic thresher (Alopias pelagicus), and mexican hornshark (Heterodontus mexicanus). The artisanal fleet targets silky shark and scalloped hammerheads with longlines as well. López and Ixquiac (2010) (Lopez and Ixquiac 2010) indicate the common dolphinfish artisanal fleet both target and incidentally capture indo-Pacific sailfish (Istiophorus platypterus), blue marlin (Makaira nigricans) and tunas (Thunnus spp.).

 

In a statistical bulletin published by MAGA (MAGA, 2016), the total pelagic bycatch in 2016 reached 42,345 pounds compared with 293 pounds registered just for common dolphinfish in May and June. Statistical results indicated that shark fisheries reached 689,420 pounds the same year. Both sharks and incidental catch were constant over the whole year.

 

According to CEDEPESCA (CEDEPESCA 2013), strategies to manage bycatch species to ensure that the common dolphinfish fishery does not represent serious or irreversible risks to some populations, have not been implemented yet. It should be noted that the main measures taken to reach a more accurate selectiveness in the fishery are those taken by the Guatemalan government regarding fishing gear characteristics.

 

 It is not possible to know how the common dolphinfish fishery is affecting other species due to there being no long term documented data about bycatch.

HABITAT

Last updated on 28 February 2013

Pelagic gear used to target dolphinfish does not come in contact with sea floor and has nominal effects on coastal and marine habitats. 

IATTC
Guatemala
Drifting longlines

Last updated on 11 June 2019

According to López (2005) (Lopez 2005) the common dolphinfish fishing area comprises surface and waters within the EEZ and international waters. Common dolphinfish is a pelagic species so longlines are set slightly below the surface. According to this information, fishing gears used in the common dolphinfish fishery would not affect the sea bottom (CeDePesca 2013). The extent to which this fishery contributes chemical pollution or derelict fishing gear into oceanic pelagic habitats operates is unknown but warrants review.

ECOSYSTEM
IATTC
Guatemala

Last updated on 11 June 2019

Fisheries that target high-level predators will have some impact on marine ecosystems. Some research has suggested that exploitation by fisheries can alter both target populations and a diversity of other species in the affected ecosystems (Hinke et al. 2004; see Schindler et al., 2002, for review); however, there is little empirical evidence for top-down control in oceanic ecosystems such as the Eastern Pacific Ocean (Baum and Worm, 2009). 

Common dolphinfish competes against another pelagic fish for the same species within the trophic chain (Palko et al. 1982) (Lopez and Ixquiac 2010). This competition would not be necessarily due to the capability of feeding on a variety of foods but rather it can be considered as opportunistic (Oxenford 1999). The common dolphinfish is a fast and opportunist predator that feeds on fish and cephalopods; thanks to its speed, it often successfully chases flying fish, but in turn is usually a victim to large pelagic species like marlin, tuna and emperador (Lopez and Ixquiac 2010). It has been reported that common dolphinfish is prey for oceanic fishes, including members of its species. Albacore (Thunnus alalunga) and yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares) have been found with juvenile common dolphinfish in their stomachs Lopez and Ixquiac 2010)

However, they are also fast-growing, quick-to-mature, which provides resilience to high levels of harvest (Palko et al. 1982) (IATTC 2015); (Seafood Watch 2016). The majority of global mahi-mahi catch occurs in the Eastern Pacific Ocean, and the possibility of overexploitation has motivated efforts to assess stocks and develop conservation measures (IATTC 2015). Thus, the Guatemalan mahi-mahi longline fishery could have ecosystem impacts at local scales if the target stock is overharvested and if retention of shark species and bycatch of ETP species are unsustainably high on depleted and/or declining populations. Considering the apparently high level of shark retention and bycatch in this fishery, ecosystem effects are possible.

There is no management plan or strategy to handle impacts of the fishery on the ecosystem and a proper monitoring system to clarify the interaction of this fishery with recognized vulnerable species like some sharks and turtles is not in place. There is not enough information to identify all common dolphinfish interactions in the ecosystem. Pelagic longlines are relatively selective and interact with other species exclusively in the epipelagic area

FishSource Scores

Last updated on 12 June 2019

MANAGEMENT QUALITY

As calculated for 2018 data.

The score is < 6.

There are no management strategies settled by Guatemalan authorities due to the current unknow dolphinfish population status.

As calculated for 2018 data.

The score is ≥ 6.

DIPESCA has recommended and established measures translated into official measures. Also, Guatemala follows recommendations by IATTC

As calculated for 2018 data.

The score is < 6.

IUU captures are unknown

STOCK HEALTH:

ECOSYSTEM IMPACTS

Click on the score to see subscore

Click on the score to see subscore

Click on the score to see subscore

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Bycatch Subscores

Research conducted by López (2005) clarifies and provides some information about bycatch composition and landing. Aside from that study, no ETP bycatch information is available for this fishery

  • There is not enough data to accurately specify the impact on ETP species. Some endangered species are incidentally captured.
  • This fishery overlaps with several shark, seabird, marine mammal, and sea turtle populations, some of which are currently low abundance and declining, which means that numerically low bycatch interactions can still have significant population impacts (Lewison et al. 2014).  
  • In particular, the fishery contributes to overexploited status of silky sharks in particular, as well as endangered leatherback, green, hawksbill, and olive ridley turtles. 
  • Lack of information about bycatch, as well as compliance with existing conservation regulations, prevents assessment of impacts of bycatch in this fishery on ETP species

Some shark species are landed as a result of bycatch and also are demanded for markets

  • There are some management measures set forth to reduce bycatch. Further efforts are needed.
  • Lack of information about bycatch, as well as compliance with existing conservation regulations, prevents assessment of impacts of bycatch in this fishery on ETP species

×

Habitat Subscores

There does exist some information regarding location of the fishery. Furthermore, areas with bigger individuals  have been identified in researches like the one conducted byLópez and Ixquiac(2010). The Guatemala surface drifting longline fishery targeting mahi-mahi is a pelagic fishery, which operate in open-ocean waters and do not interact with the seabed. Negligible habitats impacts would therefore be anticipated (CeDePesca 2013). The extent to which this fishery contributes chemical pollution or derelict fishing gear into oceanic pelagic habitats operates is unknown but warrants review.

Habitats have been identified and mapped.  There is some reliable information about its characterization but further information is needed

The Guatemala surface drifting longline fishery targeting mahi-mahi is a pelagic fishery, which operate in open-ocean waters and do not interact with the seabed. Negligible habitats impacts would therefore be anticipated (CeDePesca 2013). The extent to which this fishery contributes chemical pollution or derelict fishing gear into oceanic pelagic habitats operates is unknown but warrants review.

There are no measures recognized to minimize the impact on the habitat. However, the fishery operates in pelagic waters and therefore does not impact bottom habitats.

×

Ecosystem Subscores

  • Further information regarding trophic importance and relationship between dolphinfish is needed. However its predatory behavior is known as is its importance as food for other important oceanic species like Tuna.
  • High levels of shark retention and bycatch, bycatch of other ETP species, and high levels of mahi-mahi harvest could have ecosystem effects
  • However, such effects in the Eastern Pacific, and in the area of fishing operations for Guatemalan longlines specifically, are unquantified. 

There is comprehensive information about the environmental and ecosystem condition of the Guatemalan Eastern Pacific.

  • High levels of shark retention and bycatch, other ETP bycatch, and high levels of mahi-mahi catch could have ecosystem effects. 
  • However, mahi-mahi are generally resilient to high levels of harvest, thus reducing the probability of ecosystem effects.
  • Ecosystem effects in the Eastern Pacific, and in the area of fishing operations for Guatemalan longlines specifically, are unquantified.

No measures set forth have been identified for this criterion. Guatemala does not include any ecosystem management into their current domestic management plans (Seafood Watch 2016); (IAC 2018)).

To see data for biomass, please view this site on a desktop.
To see data for catch and tac, please view this site on a desktop.
To see data for fishing mortality, please view this site on a desktop.
No data available for recruitment
No data available for recruitment
To see data for management quality, please view this site on a desktop.
No data available for stock status
No data available for stock status
DATA NOTES

Scores 1-5 were scored qualitatively because there are no set TAC's and no reference points in place.

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Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs)

No related FIPs

Certifications

Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)

No related MSC certifications

Sources

Credits

SFP is grateful to the Global Sustainable Supply Chains for Marine Commodities (GMC) project for contributing to the development of this profile. GMC is an interregional initiative implemented by Ministries and Bureaus of Fisheries and Planning of Costa Rica, Ecuador, Indonesia and Philippines, with technical support of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), facilitated by Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) and funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF).

  1. Collette, B., Acero, A., Amorim, A.F., Boustany, A., Canales Ramirez, C., Cardenas, G., Carpenter, K.E., de Oliveira Leite Jr., N., Di Natale, A., Fox, W., Fredou, F.L., Graves, J., Viera Hazin, F.H., Juan Jorda, M., Minte Vera, C., Miyabe, N., Montano Cruz, R., Nelson, R., Oxenford, H., Schaefer, K., Serra, R., Sun, C., Teixeira Lessa, R.P., Pires Ferreira Travassos, P.E., Uozumi, Y. & Yanez, E. 2011. Coryphaena hippurus. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.1.
  2. FAO. 2004. Republic of Costa Rica, Fishery Country Profile, FAO of the United Nations, April 2004..http://www.fao.org/fi/oldsite/FCP/en/CRI/profile.htm
  3. FAO. 2006. Perfiles sobre la pesca y la acuicultura por países. Nicaragua. Perfiles sobre la pesca y la acuicultura por países. In: Departamento de Pesca y Acuicultura de la FAO [en línea]. Rome.http://www.fao.org/fishery/countrysector/FI-CP_NI/es
  4. IATTC. 2004. IATTC Resolution C-04-07 on a three year program to mitigate the impact of tuna fishing on Sea turtles, 72nd meeting, Lima, Peru, 14-18 June 2004, IATTC, 2 pages.http://www.iattc.org/PDFFiles2/Resolutions/C-04-07-Sea-turtle-program.pdf
  5. IATTC. 2006. Resolution C-04-05 – Consolidated Resolution on Bycatch, 74th Meeting, 26-30 June 2006, IATTC, 3 pages.http://www.iattc.org/PDFFiles2/Resolutions/C-04-05-REV-2-Bycatch-Jun-2006.pdf
  6. IATTC. 2012. Fishery Status Report No. 10, Tunas and Billfishes in the Eastern Pacific Ocean in 2011, IATTC, La Jolla, California, 2012, 166 pages.http://www.iattc.org/PDFFiles2/FisheryStatusReports/FisheryStatusReport10ENG.pdf
  7. IATTC. 2014a. Preliminary results from IATTC collaborative research activities on dorado in the EPO and future research plan. Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission Document SAC-05-aab. http://www.iattc.org/Meetings/Meetings2014/MAYSAC/PDFs/presentations/SAC-05-11b-Dorado.pdf
  8. IATTC. 2014b. Fishery status report No. 12. Inter-American Tropical Tuna Commission. http://www.iattc.org/PDFFiles2/FisheryStatusReports/FisheryStatusReport12.pdf
  9. Patterson, K. R., and J. Martinez. 1991. Exploitation of the dolphin-fish Coryphaena hippurus L. off Ecuador: analysis by length-based virtual population analysis. Fishbyte 9: 21-23.http://www.worldcat.org/title/fishbyte-newsletter-of-the-network-of-tropical-fisheries-scientists/oclc/22920190
References

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    Common dolphinfish - Eastern Pacific Ocean, IATTC, Guatemala, Drifting longlines

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