Modélisation hiérarchique bayésienne pour l'évaluation des populations de thonidés : intérêts et limites de la prise en compte de distributions a priori informatives

Abstract : Modelisation of the population dynamics of tunas and tuna like species for stock assessment is facing two issues. (1) The hypothesis of proportionality between Catch Per Unit Effort (CPUE) and abundance (constant catchability). CPUEs from commercial fisheries appear to be the only relative measure of abundance in spite of their lack of representativity of the abundances of the populations. (2) The lack of informative data for the modelisation of the Stock-Recruit (SR) relationship, which leads to constraint this function on its steepness. The introduction of fisheries-independent sources of information is investigated in order to relax the assumption of constant catchability and to provide better justification of steepness choice for the SR relationship. The Bayesian statistical framework allows the consideration of additional information a priori via informative distributions (priors). This work investigate the elicitation of informative priors for demographic parameters and parameters related to the catchability of fishing gear, as well as the use of these priors into a surplus production model. The cases of the Atlantic bluefin tuna (Thunnus thynnus) and of the yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares}) were taken as examples. The large natural variability of pre-recruits mortality rates limits the use of life history traits for eliciting priors for demographic parameters. In addition, the SR relationship for tuna is challenged by a steepness value close to 1. It appears that informative priors on catchability parameters, in a hierarchical surplus production model, reduce uncertainties in the diagnosis on the status of tuna stocks. We show that the status of the Atlantic yellowfin tuna stock is more critical taking into account upward trends in the main fishing gears catchabilities. We conclude that prior elicitation is a reliable tool to take into account additionnal information and to improve tunas stock assessment.
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Maximilien Simon. Modélisation hiérarchique bayésienne pour l'évaluation des populations de thonidés : intérêts et limites de la prise en compte de distributions a priori informatives. Agronomie. AgroParisTech, 2012. Français. ⟨NNT : 2012AGPT0080⟩. ⟨pastel-01069066⟩

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