A century of scientific research on shrimp fisheries along the Belgian Coast.

Master Thesis subject (30 ECTS)
Since the early 20th century Belgian researchers organize scientific campaigns onboard of commercial vessels to investigate the shrimp fisheries along the Belgian coast. Research focused on the identification of species captured during fishing, determining the impact of shrimp fisheries on the shrimp and fish populations and gear alteration in order to optimize catch and minimize bycatch. Today a century of catch data exists. Most of these data were fragmented in reports or original paper forms and have been made digitally available by VLIZ and ILVO. The possibilities of exploring and analyzing these data are high. During this master thesis the student explores the data series in order to identify research questions that can be tackled with the available data in collaboration with VLIZ and ILVO. This could be: presence or absence of fish and differences in length over time, catch efficiency of different fishing gears, trend analysis including a changing environment or pressure,.. One or several of the research questions will be investigated by the student itself. The main tools will be literature and the existing integrated database but in case more scientific results are needed, experimental fishing campaigns can be organized in order to get insight into the comparability of the fishing gear.
- Student will work regularly at Oostende (VLIZ) - Most of the older literature is only available in Dutch/French - Student must be able to work independently and learn quickly
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Promotor: An Vanreusel (marbiol) Copromotor: Jan Mees (VLIZ) ; Hans Polet (ILVO) Begeleiding: Elien Dewitte (VLIZ), Annelies Goffin (VLIZ), Els Torreele (ILVO), Bart Verschueren (ILVO)
Reference Number: RP-47871