Task 1.2: Resolution of changes in genetic composition of stocks

There is a remarkably small amount of detailed information on the genetics of exploited fish populations, specifically, those of major commercial importance. This task will review and synthesize available knowledge of past and present population structure, effective population sizes/loss of genetic variation, human induced changes at the gene level for important biological traits in marine fish populations in general and for case study species and regional seas in particular. Based on the synthesis of the results an evaluation or model of the expected effect of current and alternative fisheries management strategies, such as marine protected areas, ecosystem-based fisheries, stock enhancement and maximum size at catch, on the genetic composition of exploited marine fish populations will be undertaken. The specific areas of investigation are:

  1. Population structure;
  2. Changes in levels of genetic variation;
  3. Genes affecting important biological traits;
  4. Evaluate/model the effect of different management strategies on the maintenance of genetic variability in harvested fish populations;
  5. Population structure of sprat in the Baltic Sea and adjacent waters.