12 August 2008

Artisanal fisheries in Andros, Greece

Tethys researchers Joan Gonzalvo and Giovanni Bearzi recently visited the Greek island of Andros, in the northern Cyclades, and had extensive talks with the President of the Fishermen's Union for Southern Aegean, Dimitris Zannes, and with other local fishermen.

The situation in Andros seems to be similar to the one documented by Tethys during the study conducted in the waters around the Ionian island of Kalamos: industrial overfishing by purse seiners and trawlers reportedly has depleted the local fish stocks.

Mr. Dimitris Zannes said that when he was a kid he could choose whether following in the steps of his father, who was a fishermen, or doing some other job. However, Dimitris lamented that his son won't have such an option. Artisanal fishermen no longer can make a living out of the sea.

The artisanal fishermen of Andros also have problems with dolphins (most likely bottlenose dolphins) causing damage to their nets. However, they asserted that industrial overfishing and the resulting damage to marine ecosystems is by far their main problem.

Giovanni Bearzi

Photo: Dimitris Zannes, President of the Fishermen's Union for Southern Aegean (right), shows to Joan Gonzalvo (left) damage caused by dolphins to trammel nets.

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