Dr Claire Szostek
Shellfish Centre Science Officer
Room: Floor 2, Marine Centre Wales Phone: +44 (0)1248 388472
I am a marine fisheries ecologist with a keen interest in combining practical and numerical methods to provide data to inform sustainable fisheries management under three themes: i) stock assessment, ii) habitat impacts, iii) effective management, fulfilled through collaborative science-industry projects. I completed my PhD at Bangor University in 2015. My research focused on the king scallop fishery in the English Channel (worth >£60 million per annum) and was funded by the UK scallop fishing industry. I actively engaged with key stakeholders including fishermen, processors and government agencies to fill vital data gaps for the scallop fishery in relation to quantifying the spatial extent of inshore and offshore scallop fishing effort in the English Channel, population genetics and fishery bycatch. I also gathered data from commercial vessels and from scientific surveys on board the RV Prince Madog, to quantify the habitat impacts of the commercial fishery within the context of the seabed environments present across the fishery.
I have since worked with Seafish (www.seafish.org) on developing the data used to inform the RASS tool (Risk Assessment for Sourcing Seafood). Using published data on fishing gear seabed penetration depths alongside numerical modelling techniques, I evaluated the benthic impacts of standard and modified gears and produced a tool for fisheries managers. I am currently working on collaborative projects with industry partners to increase and enhance shellfish and aquaculture production in Wales (www.shellfish.bangor.ac.uk), including developing innovative shellfish population survey methods and sampling gears.