Dynamic Interdependence between Anglers and Fishes in Spatially Coupled Inland Fisheries

Scott F. Collins, Matthew J. Diana, David H. Wahl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The cumulative harvest pressure exerted by recreational anglers can be intense in some locations. Sustainable management and conservation of inland fisheries requires an understanding of the spatial ecology of fish-angler interactions (e.g., direct, indirect, and feedback). Advancement towards this goal requires study of the complex interdependencies of human and natural systems, which can be achieved, in part, by looking beyond the wetted confines of individual waterbodies towards the broader angling landscape. It has been hypothesized that fish stocks should experience strong reductions in areas near large aggregations of recreational anglers where fishing effort is presumed to be greatest. To test this hypothesis, we examined a complex of direct, indirect, and feedback effects among recreational anglers, bluegill sunfish Lepomis macrochirus, and largemouth bass Micropterous salmoides across inland recreational fisheries (n = 29 reservoirs) using path analysis and structural equation modeling. We found that recreational anglers imparted detectable effects on recreational bluegill (direct) and bass (indirect) fisheries across the landscape, which we attributed to (1) short travel distances of individuals at local scales (
Original languageEnglish
Article number10218
Issue number16
StatePublished - Aug 2022


  • INHS
  • recreational fisheries
  • landscape feedback
  • trophic ecology
  • socio-ecological systems

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Building and Construction
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


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