Research activity in fisheries sector includes the following categories:
Fish Biology, Assessment and Management
Since 2005, AP Marine has been involved with the Department of Fisheries and Marine Research of the Ministry of Agriculture in Cyprus with the EU Data Collection Regulation (EC) No. 665/2008. Within this framework AP Marine has carried out biological sampling and assessment of important fish species of the Cyprus fishery.
This has included sampling on board, at landing sites and points of sale, assessment of discards and landings and collection of samples for laboratory analysis and examination.
At AP Marine’s lab facilities fish samples are regularly examined and assessment is carried out for maturity, sex, length, weight and age. Also tissue and gonad samples are taken when necessary for analysis of different toxins including heavy metals as well as calibration of macroscopic maturity stage designation with histological examination of gonads. Age assessment is an area in which AP Marine is largely experienced. Assessments are made utilizing otoliths for demersal and small pelagic species and spine sections for large pelagic species.
Measurement is carried out utilizing digital methods and images of all otoliths and spines are kept in AP Marine’s electronic archives for future reference.
All of the data collected is vetted and statistical analysis is carried out in order to produce clear results relating to the targets and aims of each research undertaking.
Furthermore, AP Marine’s research interests include population dynamics, gear selectivity and fisheries management. Specific interests relating to the ecology, biology and dynamics between fisheries resources are areas of research in which proposals for funding are submitted.
Interest in highly migratory species, lessepsian migrants, interactions within food webs and biodiversity in ichthyofauna are subjects in which scientists at AP Marine have specific research interests in.
Experimental Fishing Surveys
Since 2006 AP Marine has carried out for the Department of Fisheries and Marine Research, in collaboration with the Fisheries Research Institute (Hellenic Agricultural Organization - Demeter) the MEDITS Survey (International Bottom Trawl Survey In the Mediterranean). The MEDITS survey program produces basic information on benthic and demersal fish species in term of population distribution as well as demographic structure, through systematic bottom trawling, on the continental shelve and along the upper slopes in the Mediterranean Sea.
AP Marine in collaboration with professional and sport fishermen regularly test and assess new fishing techniques and methods particularly pertaining to the use of trawling and jigging gears that are utilised in small scale coastal artisanal fisheries.
Marine Protected Areas For Fisheries
AP Marine has a particular interest in MPA’s and the necessity of these is evident in the case of Cyprus. AP Marine scientists understand the importance of protected areas in Cyprus and are promoting the installation of MPA’s for fisheries purposes in selected sites.
The company has already started to undertake initiatives at local level in order to understand the problems that will be faced upon creating MPA’s in various areas and the response of stakeholders especially local fishermen to the whole process.