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Prehistoric vs. modern Baltic Sea cod fisheries: selectivity across the millennia
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies.
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2008 (English)In: Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Biological Sciences, ISSN 0962-8452, E-ISSN 1471-2954, Vol. 275, no 1652, p. 2659-2665Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Combining Stone Age and modern data provides unique insights for management, extending beyond contemporary problems and shifting baselines. Using fish chronometric parts, we compared demographic characteristics of exploited cod populations from the Neolithic Period (4500 BP) to the modern highly exploited fishery in the central Baltic Sea. We found that Neolithic cod were larger (mean 56.4 cm, 95% confidence interval (CI)±0.9) than modern fish (weighted mean length in catch =49.5±0.2 cm in 1995, 48.2±0.2 cm in 2003), and older (mean ages =4.7±0.11, 3.1±0.02 and 3.6±0.02 years for Neolithic, 1995, and 2003 fisheries, respectively). Fishery-independent surveys in 1995 and 2003 show that mean sizes in the stock are 16–17 cm smaller than reflected in the fishery, and mean ages approximately 1–1.5 years younger. Modelled von Bertalanffy growth and back-calculated lengths indicated that Neolithic cod grew to smaller asymptotic lengths, but were larger at younger ages, implying rapid early growth. Very small Neolithic cod were absent and large individuals were rare as in modern times. This could be owing to selective harvests, the absence of small and large fish in the area or a combination. Comparing modern and prehistoric times, fishery selection is evident, but apparently not as great as in the North Atlantic proper.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 275, no 1652, p. 2659-2665
Keywords [en]
Baltic Sea cod, Neolithic fishery, otoliths, fishery selection
National Category
Archaeology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-17167DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2008.0711OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-17167DiVA, id: diva2:183687
Available from: 2009-01-08 Created: 2009-01-08 Last updated: 2018-12-03Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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  • apa
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