Spatial patterns of fishing fleets on the Southeastern Brazilian Bight
ABSTRACT. This study aimed to determine the different usage strategies of the marine environment by fishing fleets landing in São Paulo based on an analysis of the spatial distribution patterns indicated in 337,482 trips between 2010 and 2013. The sea region off the Brazilian coast between 23°00'S and 28°00'S (Southeastern Brazilian Bight) was divided into six depth strata. For each stratum, the number of trips, effective fishing days, catch and number of jobs were estimated. The stratum from 0 to 20 m depth had the highest frequency of trips and importance for the low-mobility fleets from which 33% of the total catch landed in the state was extracted. The higher mobility fleets were more represented starting at depths of 20 m. The stratum from 20-50 m had the largest catches, 52% of the total landings. The activity of the São Paulo fishing fleets, with low or high fishing power, was concentrated on the inner shelf. The region of the outer shelf and the continental shelf break are also frequently exploited by the higher mobility fleets, where the largest catches of demersal fish occur. The demersal and pelagic environments beyond the continental shelf break are rarely exploited and require the use of specific fishing gear.