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When should restocking and stock enhancement be used to manage sea cucumber fisheries?
- Access to technology for producing and releasing juveniles is not a sufficient rationale to proceed with restocking (restoring stocks to the point where they can sustain regular harvests) or stock enhancement (increasing yields by overcoming recruitment limitation) of sea cucumber populations. Rather, careful decisions need to be made about whether these interventions are likely to be cost-effective ways of improving productivity. Although restocking is designed to restore severely depleted stocks, it will be essential to determine whether the release of cultured juveniles will significantly reduce the time needed for replenishment compared to other forms of management, e.g., a total moratorium on fishing or artificially aggregating and protecting some of the wild adults to promote spawning success.