Recreational fishers’ attitudes towards the 2004 rezoning of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park

Sutton, Stephen G., and Tobin, Renae C. (2009) Recreational fishers’ attitudes towards the 2004 rezoning of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. Environmental Conservation, 36 (3). pp. 245-252.

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Abstract

With the marine environment under increasing threat from multiple sources, the ability of managers to generate support from stakeholders will be vital for the success of conservation initiatives. In 2004, a new zoning plan for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park increased no-take areas from 4.5% to 33% of the total Park area. The aims of this study were to measure recreational fishers’ level of support for the plan and understand how they form attitudes towards conservation initiatives in the Park. A survey of Great Barrier Reef Marine Park recreational fishers conducted three years after implementation of the new zoning plan revealed that 68% of fishers believed that, in general, rezoning the Marine Park was a good idea, whereas 57% supported the actual zoning plan that was implemented. A majority of fishers believed that rezoning the Marine Park was necessary, that the new zoning plan had high conservation value, and that the plan had little impact on their recreational fishing activity. However, most fishers had low to moderate satisfaction with the programme used to consult the public throughout the rezoning process. Logistic regression models revealed a strong relationship between level of support for the plan and fishers’ perceptions about the necessity of the plan and its conservation value, the adequacy of the consultation process, and the impact of the plan on their fishing activity. Results indicate that recreational fishers can be strong supporters of conservation initiatives in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park if these initiatives are consistent with their values, and if efforts are made to engage them in the decision making process. These results will enhance the ability of managers to generate support from the recreational fishing community for conservation initiatives in marine environments.

Item ID: 8058
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1469-4387
Keywords: attitudes; Great Barrier Reef; recreational fishing; zoning
Funders: MTSRF
Date Deposited: 26 Feb 2010 05:44
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050209 Natural Resource Management @ 40%
07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0704 Fisheries Sciences > 070403 Fisheries Management @ 60%
SEO Codes: 83 ANIMAL PRODUCTION AND ANIMAL PRIMARY PRODUCTS > 8302 Fisheries - Wild Caught > 830201 Fisheries Recreational @ 50%
83 ANIMAL PRODUCTION AND ANIMAL PRIMARY PRODUCTS > 8302 Fisheries - Wild Caught > 830204 Wild Caught Fin Fish (excl. Tuna) @ 25%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9607 Environmental Policy, Legislation and Standards > 960701 Coastal and Marine Management Policy @ 25%
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