Sean Brillant, Canadian Wildlife Federation

The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
An Investigation into the Scapegoating of Canada’s Grey Seal

By Linda Pannozzo  

The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea documents circumstances leading to two current, related debates in fisheries management for Atlantic Canada: that grey seals are the reason cod have failed to recover since the moratorium on that fishery; and the proposal that a cull of this population of seals will benefit cod populations. Linda Pannozzo has done a great deal of work to present the social, scientific, and managerial conditions that have led to this debate. While there is a tone of opposition to the cull throughout the book, this is not surprising as the author clearly presents her perspective in the forward.

This book gives good insights into fisheries science, fisheries management and principles of ecological interactions, as well as the effect of politics and human perception on these issues. Occasionally the book delves into details of seemingly distant topics (e.g. ITQs, MSY, ecological interactions, history of fisheries management) the purpose of which sometimes seems unclear, however this is partially due to the inter-relatedness of these topics with the subject of this book.

This book is easy to read and interesting. It concludes powerfully; both her last chapter and the epilogue. Many readers will benefit by seeing what lies beyond the ‘tip of the iceberg’ that is fisheries science and management. Because all wildlife are a public resource managed by our government for the benefit of all (current and future) Canadians, we should all be more aware of debates and decisions that affect our natural heritage. Reading this book will help to increase that awareness. - Sean Brillant, Manager, Marine Programs, Canadian Wildlife Federation | Fédération canadienne de la faune

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