Writing as an ex-colleague of the authors, I confess I only got to reading this book after I retired from full-time fisheries science. I found it filled several gaps in my professional knowledge and balanced my familiarity with European industrial-style fisheries with information about oceanic, artisanal and other small-scale fisheries around the world. There are also brief reviews of management methods, stock assessments, ecological theory and models, fisheries economics, sociology, gear, in fact, just about everything associated with the subject. The reviews and references are very useful for getting a foothold in these difficult subjects and, if you don't want to go into them deeply, you are at least aware of the ideas buzzing around. Add to that, good illustrations and writing style, a balanced approach to contentious issues, and the high-level qualifications of the authors, and I am keen to recommend the book to anyone with an interest in fisheries and their consequences.
Criticisms: I would have liked more detail in the chapter on life histories, particularly as this is a special subject of two of the authors and it has gained relevance for risk assessment of fisheries. There's not so much detail on statistical sampling methods which are so important to fisheries management and science but many people will find the limitation of such a dry subject to be a bonus! The book is getting a little old now, though I did not notice that much of the information presented has been corrected since publication. I hope the authors can find time for a new edition soon, mostly to add new stuff to what is already there.
I bought this book for a course that I am doing, and have used it for several essays. I am constantly finding myself reading more and more of the topics that lead on from those that I have looked up. This book is so well written that it is very easy to read. It is well put together, in a logical order, with lots of examples and interesting details. It would be use full for everyone, from undergraduates to fishers to PhDs and beyond. I would highly recommend this book.
I became interested in marine ecology and fisheries management on a trip to BC to see bears, and was looking for a way to follow it up. I have a background in aeronautical engineering and computing, so the mathematical modelling approaches are interesting (and well referenced if you wish to follow up). The book is presenting an overview of the industry in general, and methods of estimating populations, and also looking at the behaviour of fishermen - which the EEC CFP seems to overlook (much as the CAP is seen as something to be worked around by farmers, and bonus payments by the shop floor in a factory). It would be interesting to see an expert review, but the book does seem complete and well balanced on a contentious area of conservation.
This is an ideal text book for any student studying fisheries (or for a lecturer looking for a framework upon which to base a 12 week course). It is very well written and structured. There is also the added bonus that you can access the graphics used in the book on line. There are more comprehensive texts than this but they exorbitantly priced and beyond the pocket of most students (and academics!) In my opinion this replaces Pitcher and Hart which was the standard text when I was an undergraduate.