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Unit (2019)

Information on this page, including unit offerings, is from the 2019 academic year.

Fish and Wildlife Populations (BIO249)

Organisational Unit Environmental and Conservation Sciences
Credit Points 3
Availability MURDOCH: S1-internal
Teaching Timetables Murdoch S1
Description This unit introduces students to the world of managing fish and wildlife populations amidst the pressures of environmental change, increasing populations and the push for economic development. Students will develop an understanding of the importance of biological and ecosystem knowledge, and economic considerations in developing effective conservation strategies and sustainable harvest policies for a range of different species.
Unit Learning Outcomes On successful completion of the unit students should be able to:
1. Understand and describe the habitats, movements, recruitment, reproductive biology, genetics, age and growth, diets and feeding of fish and some wildlife species;
2. Understand and describe the different types of commercial and recreational fishing practices for species of fish, crustaceans and molluscs and the interactions between fisheries and marine wildlife, particularly cetaceans (whales and dolphins);
3. Understand the main threats to seabird and cetacean populations and how they may be reduced;
4. Understand and describe the ways in which stock assessment models assist in the management of fisheries, and, in the absence of such models, how fisheries are managed; and
5. Discuss some of the management options for different types of fisheries and species of conservation significance.
Timetabled Learning Activities Lectures: 2 hours per week; computer laboratories: 9 hours per semester; biological laboratories: 6 hours per semester; film discussion: 3 hours per semester. Non-mandatory tutorials 4 hours per semester.
Unit Learning Experiences The unit provides a sound understanding of fundamental aspects of fish and wildlife biology and fisheries, and the interactions between fisheries and wildlife. It places emphasis on providing students with quantitative skills and experience in using the features of Excel to explore data and use models in fisheries and wildlife populations. Emphasis is also placed on describing the habitats, reproductive biology, age compositions and growth rates of different species, including cetaceans and seabirds. Details are given for case histories of selected fisheries for finfish, crustaceans and molluscs in Australia and elsewhere in the world. The theoretical background of stock assessment models and the application of management tools are described and the role of aquaculture in the development of new fisheries and in the maintenance of existing fisheries is discussed. The approach to learning in this unit is to use the lectures to provide the background to understand the biology of fish, cetaceans (dolphins and whales) and seabirds, the risks to the viability of these populations, methods of assessing the status of these populations and management. The computer laboratories are designed to build on the lectures through enhancing skills in the use of Excel and its application to fisheries data analysis and interpretation and packages for understanding marine wildlife populations. The workshop/discussion focussed around the principles of the Tragedy of the Commons and the Prisoners' Dilemma builds understanding of the interplay between fish biology, fisheries, economics and politics, and the importance of human behaviour in managing fisheries. Communication and discussion in the Unit will be facilitated through the LMS, as this provides a key contact point for staff and students. The LMS will contain - * Echo lecture recording * Discussion board * Unit guide * Field practical data sets * Announcements about the unit.
Other Learning Experiences Tutorials of 1 h duration are offered in the two weeks following two of the computer laboratories (Introduction to Excel and Stock Assessment) to consolidate the learning from them and provide assistance to students in completing the associated assignments from these laboratories.
Assessment Assessment 1. Laboratory write up of Fish reproduction, age and growth 25% (1,500 words) 2. Response to questions on video discussion workshop 'Taking Stock' 20% (1,000 words) 3. Excel assignment on Stock Assessment 15% (1,000 words) 5. Exam 40% (25 short answer, 1 essay)
Prerequisites BIO103 Environmental Biology/Introduction to Environmental Biology or BIO180 Introduction to Marine Biology.
Exclusions Students who have successfully completed BIO205/BIO249 Sustainable Management of Fish and Wildlife may not enrol in this unit for credit.
Previously 2015: 'Sustainable Management of Fish and Wildlife'
Appears in these Courses/Majors:
see individual structures for context
Conservation and Wildlife Biology (BSc) [New in 2014]
Marine Biology (BSc) [New in 2017]
Appears in these Minors Fisheries Science
Marine Biology
Resource Management
Internet Access RequirementsMurdoch units normally include an online component comprising materials, discussions, lecture recordings and assessment activities. All students, regardless of their location or mode of study, need to have access to and be able to use computing devices with browsing capability and a connection to the Internet via Broadband (Cable, ADSL or Mobile) or Wireless. The Internet connection should be readily available and allow large amounts of data to be streamed or downloaded (approximately 100MB per lecture recording). Students also need to be able to enter into online discussions and submit assignments online.


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