During 2013, WG-EMM agreed to form two inter-sessional task groups to progress work that might facilitate the development of new management procedures for the krill fishery in Area 48. In 2014, the state of ecological knowledge for Subarea 48.2 was reviewed, and it was suggested that the development of any new management approaches would be highly improbable based on the current level of ecological information. In 2014 we therefore suggested that there was an urgent need to improve the ecological knowledge base, but that this would take time, especially in the context of climate change. Here, we suggest that if the krill fishery in Subarea 48.2 is to expand beyond its current level, a new experimental approach should be developed that will help provide the information needed. This paper therefore outlines an experimental framework that has the potential to provide the types of information required. We suggest that the experimental framework should be a CCAMLR community project involving as many Members as possible. This will be necessary if the experimental framework is to have a high probability of success. The proposed framework includes the use of CEMP sites, remote cameras at important land-based predator breeding colonies, at-sea observations of predators, oceanographic moorings with acoustic sensors, acoustic data collection during fishing operations and repeated fine-scale acoustic surveys. We propose that the experiment should be evaluated after 5 years in order to explore initial results and to determine if the experimental framework should be continued.
Professor Philip Trathan