Marine ranching, which is considered a sustainable fishery mode that has advantages for the ecosystem approach to fishery, the ecosystem approach to aquaculture, and capture-based aquaculture, is rapidly growing in China. The development of marine ranching requires integrating different theoretical frameworks, methodological approaches for conceptual exploring, and models and management of ecosystem frameworks. We reviewed the definition of marine ranching, the history of marine ranching construction in China, and the techniques, principles, and cases of marine ranching construction and management in the East China Sea (ECS). We highlight four major developments in marine ranching in the ECS: (1) marine ranching site selection and design, (2) habitat restoration and construction technologies, (3) stock enhancement and the behavioral control of fishery resources, and (4) marine ranching management. We conclude that this step-wise procedure for marine ranching construction and management could have comprehensive benefits in terms of ecology, the economy, and society. Finally, a synthesis of the existing problems in ECS marine ranching construction, along with future challenges and directions, are outlined.
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