شماره مطلب: 456

A model for the future: Ecosystem services provided by the aquaculture activities of Veta la Palma, Southern Spain

نویسنده: 
M.E.M.Walton
انتشارات: 
elsevier
تعدات صفحات: 
9
The lack of space and opportunity for development has been identified as key reasons behind the stagnation ofthe European aquaculture industry. With the historical loss and degradation of current European wetlandsthere is an opportunity for harnessing the commercial investment of the aquaculture industry in constructionof dual purpose wetlands that incorporate both conservation and extensive aquaculture activities. Thesewetlands can be used to expand the area available to suitable aquaculture into ecologically sensitive areas,such as Natura 2000 sites. Veta la Palma (VLP) situated in the Doñana Natural Park (and a Natura 2000 site) isan example of such an aquaculture development and a possible model for future opportunities. In the currentstudy some of the important ecosystem services that are provided by VLP are assessed. The provisioning servicesof VLPwere the economic rationale for the investment and more than 820 tonnes yr−1 of fish and shrimp is produced,through a mixture of semi-extensive and extensive aquaculture. The regulating services include nutrientabsorption, and the flow of river water through VLP and high primary production results in the absorption of377 tonnes of dissolved inorganic nitrogen yr−1, and 516 tonnes of C yr−1. Supporting services include theprovision of habitat for more than 94 bird and 21 fish species. The primary production that supports the birds,extensive and semi-extensive aquaculture production was also estimated to be 167,000 tonnes, 50,000 tonnesand 133,000 tonnes yr−1, respectively. The losses to birds are substantial and these estimates indicate thatalmost half of the primary production supports the wetland birds which directly consume 249 tonnes of fishand 2578 tonnes of invertebrates per annum. However it is the ecological credentials of the farm that enable premiumpricesand hence ensure the economic viability of the farm. The study demonstrates the possibility of usingaquaculture to mitigate the historical loss of wetlands, provide significant ecosystem services and contribute toachievement of the European environmental legislative goals, and furthers the opportunity for the expansionof aquaculture into sensitive but impacted habitats.
حجم: 
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