Broadbill swordfish: status of established fisheries and lessons for developing fisheries

  • Published source details Ward P., Porter J.M. & Elscot S. (2000) Broadbill swordfish: status of established fisheries and lessons for developing fisheries. Fish and Fisheries, 1, 317-336.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Set a minimum landing size for commercially fished species

Action Link
Marine Fish Conservation
  1. Set a minimum landing size for commercially fished species

    A review in 2000 of broadbill swordfish Xiphias gladius fisheries worldwide (Ward et al. 2000) reported that after recommended minimum landing sizes and catch limits were introduced, strong recruitment was found for one stock, whilst four others could not be assessed. This result was not tested for statistical significance. After measures were introduced in 1994, recruitment of age-1 swordfish in the North Atlantic area was strong in 1997 and in 1998 (no data reported), while in the four other areas there were either wide fluctuations in recruitment or there was no reliable assessment of the stocks (see paper for details). In addition, compliance was generally poor and between 19–37% of swordfish landed from various countries fishing in the Atlantic in 1998 were under the recommended size (125 cm). In 1994, minimum size limits and total allowable catches for swordfish were recommended by the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas. However, the recommendations were enforced by some, but not all member states, and following the limits some vessels relocated to other regions and an increase in discarded swordfish was reported. Five swordfish fisheries were reviewed to develop guidelines for the assessment and management of developing swordfish fisheries.

    (Summarised by: Natasha Taylor)

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