Tool name * Atlantis

Atlantis is an ecosystem box-model intended for use in management strategy evaluation. It was originally developed in Australia, but is increasingly used in the USA as well. The overall structure of Atlantis is based around having multiple alternative submodels to represent each step in the management strategy and adaptive management cycles. The Atlantis framework, developed from the ''Bay Model 2'' ecosystem model, is a deterministic model that tracks the nutrient (nitrogen and silica) flow through the main biological groups found in temperate marine ecosystems, and three detritus groups (labile detritus, refractory detritus, and carrion). The primary processes considered are consumption, production, waste production, migration, predation, recruitment, habitat dependence, and natural and fishing mortality.

Category All, Fisheries Analysis, Numerical Model
What step(s) in analysis framework 2a, 2b
What step(s) in Governance framework

For each species: Abundance per area, individual growth rates, lenght-weight conversions, max age, and age at maturity, general habitat preferences, dispersal and/or migratory characteristics within and outside the model, diets, recruitment parameters. For ecosystem map: Habitat distribution (bottom type + biogenic habitat) For calibration: Historical catch and abundance data

Data Quality Required


Modification Required

Not available

Expertise Required

Not available

Spatial and Temporal

Atlantis is spatially resolved, with a polygonal geometry that matches the major geographical features of the system simulated. The size of each polygon reflects the extent of spatial homogeneity in the physical variables represented in the model (depth, seabed type [reef or flat], canyon coverage, porosity, bottom stress, erosion rate, salinity, light, and temperature). Fisheries-dependent data can be aggregated over the entire area by quarter, whereas fisheries-independent data (such as surveys or diet composition) may only be available infrequently (annually to once every decade) from ''snapshots'' taken at specific sampling locations. Models have mainly been developed for Australia.


Support for ecosystem management Simulating the fishery ecosystem

License cost issues



Not available

Literature: References & Manuals *