ABOUT THE CONFERENCE
The 70th Annual conference of the Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute will be held in Merida, Mexico, from 6-10 November 2017 at The Hyatt Regency Merida Hotel. The meeting is being hosted by the CINVESTAV, Unidad Merida; Instituto Technologico de Merida y Universidad Autonoma de Yucatan.
The conference will focus on applying fisheries and marine science to solve problems by bringing multiple users of ocean resources together to make informed and coordinated decisions for sustainable use of these resources. Addressing the issues of connectivity, fisheries management, conservation, and related issues at GCFI will aid in addressing critical marine resource issues within the Wider Caribbean Region.
CONFERENCE THEMATIC SESSION
The theme of the Conference is “TOWARDS THE SUSTAINABILITY OF TROPICAL FISHERIES STRATEGIES, MODELS AND TOOLS”. The initiative is based on the interest of the membership of the GCFI to call attention to users on the importance of sustainable oceans through the implementation of sustainable fisheries and marine resource management. We recognize that new sustainability-oriented projects are needed in order to reset ecological balances, to change consumption and production patterns, to promote ecological efficiency, and to restore social equity conditions. The conference will emphasize the stakeholder processes to identify fisheries management strategies that put fisheries on the path to sustainability. In particular, we encourage presentations that guides the user in identifying the appropriate monitoring, assessment and management options for a specific fishery, given its socio-economic and governance context, goals and needs.
GCFI is pleased to announce that the opening address will be presented by Dr. Brian Luckhurst. Dr. Luckhurst retired several years ago after 27 years as the Senior Fisheries Officer, Department of Environmental Protection, Bermuda Government. He has worked in the wider Caribbean region since 1970 conducting studies in Barbados, Curacao, Bonaire and Venezuela. He made his first dive on a grouper spawning aggregation in 1973. Most of his work has been with coral reef fishes including studies of the reproduction and age and growth of groupers and snappers, with a focus on the dynamics of reef fish spawning aggregations, management and conservation issues in Bermuda, Belize, Puerto Rico, Cayman Islands and the wider Caribbean.
Dr. Luckhurst monitored the recovery of Bermuda’s coral reef fish stocks (focusing on parrotfish) by diver census for nine years following a fish pot ban in 1990. Other studies have involved the fishery biology of pelagic species such as wahoo, yellowfin tuna, blackfin tuna and dolphinfish. He was a partner in an international program to deploy satellite pop-up tags on blue marlin in the western Atlantic over five years. He has also conducted studies on the fishery biology of deep-water fishes (wreckfish, misty grouper). He has published over 75 scientific papers as well as numerous technical reports and marine conservation pamphlets. He is a co-author of a book published in 1999, “Fishes of Bermuda”. He is a long-standing emeritus member of the Gulf and Caribbean Fisheries Institute (GCFI), and is a Board member of Science and Conservation of Fish Aggregations (SCRFA). He has been a fisheries and marine resources consultant to The Nature Conservancy, the Caribbean Fishery Resources and Management Program (CFRAMP) and the Caribbean Fisheries Management Council. Since retirement he has been a fisheries consultant to the Bermuda Government and for the past five years he has been working with the Sargasso Sea Commission studying the pelagic ecosystem of the Sargasso Sea with a focus on tunas, swordfish and sharks.