The benthic habitat status under increasing fishery pressure

Master Thesis subject (30 ECTS)
The aim of this topic is to investigate the effect of gradients in fishery pressure on the structural and functional characteristics of the soft-bottom ecosystem. Currently, quantified fishery pressure information of the last ten year in the Southern bight of the North Sea is available. This can be coupled with the large set of monitoring data from this soft-bottom system (e.g. demersal fish, epibenthos, and macrobenthos) to find links with fishery. In a next step those links can be evaluated through the use of indicators to measure the changes. This topic fits completely in the investigations going on around the descriptor 'sea floor integrity' under the Marine Strategy Framework Directive on national and international level.
Number of students: 
academic year: 
Contact person email: 
contact person first name: 
Gert Van Hoey
Other people involved: 
Bart Vanelslander, Annelies De Backer
Reference Number: RP-39731