Our aim is for local fishermen and scientists to work together to jointly manage a sustainable brown shrimp fishery in the Wadden Sea.


To read a quick one page summary of the case study, its aims and achievements please click here.


Our progress so far…

Brown shrimp is an important species for the local fishermen, but bycatch is making fishers’ livelihoods difficult. Bycatch covers a range of species from juvenile plaice, herring and sprat, to rare and migrant species important to the Marine Strategy Framework Directive, e.g. salmon and lampreys.

But monitoring bycatch and working out how to avoid it will make the fishery more viable, both environmentally and economically.

So fishermen are collaborating with scientists to collect data about both their target species, brown shrimp, as well as by-catch species.This data will be used to:

  • investigate disease within the brown shrimp population
  • create a species inventory for the area, and
  • provide an open-access database for local fishermen.

Our progress so far in working together to collect this important data is outlined below:

36 Months On: Progress Update from German Case Study

36 months in to the GAP2 project, the German case study, based on the Wadden Sea, provides an update on its progress working with a brown shrimp fishery.

Mar 2014
24 Months On: Progress Update from German Case Study

24 Months on, an update on the progress of the German case study investigating the climate change effect on shrimp fisheries.

Apr 2013
18 Months On: Progress Update from German case study

An update on the German case study exploring joint management of a brown shrimp fishery, 18 months into the GAP2 project.

Nov 2012
One Year On: Progress Update on German Case Study

An update on the German case study exploring how to jointly manage a sustainable brown shrimp fishery in the Wadden Sea, on year into the GAP2 project.

Jun 2012
Summer and Autumn events

GAP2 participants attend events throughout summer and autumn 2011 to advance case study.

Dec 2011
Scientists and fishers jointly develop new method

Scientists and fishers jointly develop a method for more quickly recording rare or invasive species.

Oct 2011
Fishers supplying scientists with shrimp

Fishers will supply scientists with shrimp samples for black spot disease monitoring.

Sep 2011

Next Steps

Over the next few months, we’re hoping to recruit some more fishermen into the project. We currently have two fishermen “signed up”, but if we want to cover the whole of the Wadden Sea, we will need to involve at least 6 vessels.

Media Coverage

German TV networks have produced two 3-4 minute films aboard the trawler POLARIS about our case study. You can watch them here:

People Involved

Kai Wätjen

Lead Researcher on case study

  • Kai is a biologist at the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research.
  • His research interests include brown shrimp fisheries, the impact of fisheries, the ecology and distribution of North Sea fishes and the effects of climate change on the marine fauna of the Wadden Sea.
  • Email:

Uwe Abken

Fishermen involved in GAP2

  • Uwe is captain and owner of the shrimp vessel POLARIS.
  • He has been fishing for the past 15 years, since the age of 35.
  • He is a member of both the “Landesfischereiverband Weser-Ems” and the producer organisation, German Shrimp Fishers Ltd. (Erzeugergemeinschaft der Deutschen Krabbenfischer GmbH).

Daniel Ahrends

Fishermen involved in GAP2

  • Daniel is 33 years old, a fisherman and captain.
  • Daniel has been fishing since 16 years old.
  • He too is a member of the “Landesfischereiverband Weser-Ems” and the producer organisation GmbH).

Stakeholder Participants

  • Cooperative of Neuharlingersiel and Association of small deep-sea and inshore fisheries within the national fishery association Weser-Ems e. V, Lower-Saxony
  • North Sea Regional Advisory Council


This ergoTOP project aims to improve energy efficiency in coastal fisheries, where fishermen currently pay up to 25% of their turnover for fuel. A short film about the project can be viewed below or by visiting


Fisher catch survey
Information to help fishermen identify Salmon (in German)
Information to help fishermen identify Shad (in German)
Shrimp Fishery in the Wadden Sea Case Study Overview

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