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Movement towards evolutionarily enlightened management

This is Science Today. Fishing and hunting are having dramatic and swift impacts on the body size and reproductive schedule of fish and other commercially harvested species. Chris Darimont, an environmental studies researcher at the University of California, Santa Cruz, says there's been an increasing awareness of how real these evolutionary changes can be in prey that humans harvest.

Darimont:       There is a real movement towards what people are calling evolutionarily enlightened management. But the real challenge just like in most management challenges is uniting the science with applied management. There's often a disconnect there and the science is much more advanced than the management is at this point.

Narrator:        But Darimont, who led a study comparing rates of these evolutionary changes, says there's been some good meetings recently uniting policy makers and scientists.

Darimont:       There's a new journal called Evolutionary Applications that is intended for managers that want to consider evolutionary impacts. So, I think things are changing, but much more work needs to be done.

Narrator:        For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.