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Media Coverage

The Ocean’s Unsung Heroes – Hooray for the Little Guys!
August 21, 2013
National Geographic NewsWatch Ocean Views

Don't Hold the Anchovies
June 27, 2013

The Ten Best Ocean Stories of 2012
December 18, 2012
“Surprising Science” - Smithsonian.com

Big Victory for Little Fish (and the Future of the Oceans)
November 14, 2012
HuffPost Green

Little Fish in a Big Pond
November 1, 2012
The Scientist

Contributions of forage fish worldwide explained
September 11, 2012

Globally, little forage fish net big profits
September 10, 2012

Cutbacks of small fish catches will yield big gains
August 23, 2012
Environmental Industry




Meeting of Ireland’s National Parliament’s Joint Committee on Agriculture, Food and the Marine
October 17, 2013
Dublin, Ireland

Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council - Forage Panel Workshop
April 11, 2013
Raleigh, NC

Herring School Workshop
February 5, 2013
Simon Fraser University
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

November 13, 2012
Nantes, France

Northeast Fisheries Service
September 12, 2012
Woods Hole, MA

COFI 2012
July 9-13, 2012
Rome, Italy

European Parliament
July 12, 2012
Brussels, Belgium



News Releases

Expert Task Force Recommends Halving Global Fishing for Crucial Prey Species

Study provides first-time analysis of three distinct contributions of forage fish worldwide

Lenfest Forage Fish Task Force Holds Pivotal Meeting.

Lenfest Forage Fish Task Force travels to Peru and examines largest forage fishery in the world



Northeast Fisheries Science Service

September 12
Woods Hole, MA

Ellen K. Pikitch – Presentation “Managing a link in ocean food webs: Findings and recommendations of the Lenfest Forage Fish Task Force”


Forage fish play a pivotal role in marine ecosystems and economies worldwide by sustaining many predators and fisheries directly and indirectly. The Lenfest Forage Fish Task Force conducted the most comprehensive worldwide analysis of the science and management of forage fish populations to date. This group of 13 preeminent scientists used a variety of approaches, including workshops, site visits, a series of nine case studies, review of existing theory and practice, and two quantitative analyses using marine food web models. In the first of these quantitative studies, the task force estimated global forage fish contributions to marine ecosystems through a synthesis of 72 published Ecopath models from around the world. The global catch value of forage fisheries was $5.6 billion, whereas fisheries supported by forage fish were more than twice as valuable ($11.3 billion). In the second quantitative study, the task force used 10 Ecopath with Ecosim models to simulate the effects of various fishing strategies on forage fish and their predators. It found that fishing at Fmsy increases the risk of forage fish population collapses seven-fold and more than doubles the average decline in predator populations, relative to a "hockey stick" strategy with fishing mortality limited to 50 percent of Fmsy at B0 and declining to zero at or below 40 precent of B0. The task force recommends employing this strategy for forage fisheries where sufficient information exists about the target species and its role in marine ecosystems. It also recommends that no new forage fisheries be initiated in low-information situations, whereas more aggressive fishing strategies might be appropriate in data-rich circumstances.