Congratulations to Monica and Camilla: the first two GAP2 Masters of Science!
On Friday 12th July, 2013, Monica Mion and Camilla Piras successfully defended their thesis at the University of Padua (Chioggia’s branch, Italy) and gained their academic degrees in Marine Biology cum laude.
Both Monica and Camilla have served their apprenticeship with the GAP2 project, working for 18 months with ISPRA researchers and Chioggia’s fishermen (fishing in the Northern Adriatic Sea). During this period they have worked onboard commercial and research fishing vessels, collecting data on both target species and discards, joined GAP2’s monthly meetings with fishermen, and passed a great many hours at ISPRA laboratories to analyze samples and data as well as particpating in the GAP2 Social Science Methods work shop (and even blogging about their experience).
Their thesis cover two fundamental aspects of the Italian Case Study.
Thesis title: Spatio-temporal distribution of commercial catches in the Veneto Region waters and fishery management implications.
Monica focused on the description of demersal target species and fishing grounds spatio-temporal distribution, integrating fishery-dependent (onboard observations, electronic log-books) and fishery-independent (trawl survey) data. This has allowed us to identify some important nursery areas in the Veneto Region administrative waters for several important commercial species such as red mullet (Mullus barbatus) and common sole (Solea solea). Moreover, she has described the demographic structure of exploited stocks, giving important insights to support the development of local management plans that will take into account the particular ecological characteristics of the Adriatic basin, where catches are characterized by the high presence of juveniles in well defined areas and seasons.
Camilla (thesis’ title: Benthic assemblages characterization in the Veneto Region marine waters and fishery management implications) focused on the description of the spatial distribution of benthic assemblages in the Veneto Region administrative waters by analyzing bottom trawlers’ discard (integrating fishery-dependent and fishery-independent data). She identified and described the main benthic assemblages, in terms of their composition and spatial distribution, contributing to the identification of the essential fish habitat of some important commercial species. As well as this she also completed a qualitative and quantitative spatio-temporal description of the discard produced by different trawled gears (otter and beam trawl) and developed a new photographic sampling method which should ease the collection of benthic assemblage data and involve fishermen in self-sampling.
Now Monica and Camilla will continue their work in the Italian GAP2 CS as onboard observers. So, congratulations and good luck!