Capstone Title

Evaluation of Time-Area Closures in the United States as a Management Measure for Highly Migratory Species Fisheries of the Atlantic Ocean

Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

M.S. Coastal Zone Management

First Advisor

David Kerstetter

Second Advisor

Donald McCorquodale


There has been increased use of spatial management for highly migratory species. This capstone review addresses a number of unresolved issues relevant to time-area fishery closures. A comprehensive evaluation of the various management goals and subsequent efficacy of the numerous closures in the United States may result in a clearer understanding of the challenges and obstacles pertaining time-area closures, including a clear set of rationales for reopening such closures to commercial and recreational marine uses. This capstone also reviews time-area closures as a viable and effective method of management for highly migratory species. This review examines the objectives and consequences of time-area closures for pelagic fisheries, which will allow fisheries managers to determine whether closures should be implemented over other conservation strategies. The findings of this investigation provide evidence for the necessity to revisit the goals and objectives of fishery closures. The process of re-evaluating the goals of fishery time-area closures can encourage fishers and management officials to collaborate and work toward a common conservation goal that can provide both biological and economic benefits.

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