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Fishing strange data in national fisheries statistics of Greece

April 18, 2014

Fisheries statistics provided by the Hellenic Statistical Authority (HELSTAT) have been often criticized for unusual estimates in landings and fishing effort data and for limitations in the sampling methodology, although there is no study on the identification of these biased and misreporting estimates. In the present study the landings per species and fishing subarea, as well as the fishing effort data per fishing gear reported by HELSTAT were analysed over the period 1982–2010.

The results showed abrupt changes of both the recorded species and species landings per subarea, spurious correlations of landings among different species groups and misreporting estimates in the number of fishing vessels per fishing gear. These might be likely attributed to: (a) differences of the HELSTAT administrative infrastructures at local scale, (b) changes in the sampling protocol followed by HELSTAT, (c) reporting faults made by HELSTAT, (d) fisheries restrictive measures at local basis, (e) other factors that increased the bias and the uncertainties of HELSTAT fisheries data and related to socio-economic (i.e. fuel price) and operational (i.e. spatial structure of the fisheries fleet) aspects and/or (f) to environmental changes that might possibly affected fisheries dynamics. The present study aims to the improvement of the effectiveness of the national fisheries statistics as pinpointed by Common Fisheries Policy in order to avoid imprecise and/or biased estimations about the state of the fisheries.

Moutopoulos DK, Koutsikopoulos C, 2014: Fishing strange data in national fisheries statistics of Greece, Marine Policy, 48, 114-122, doi:10.1016/j.marpol.2014.03.017. Article (subscription required).

 

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