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Use of Acoustic Tags to Estimate Natural Mortality, Spillover, and Movements of Lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) in a Marine Reserve

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Advances in electronic telemetry systems have led to fish tagging studies that are sufficiently long to provide estimates of natural mortality of many marine fishes. We used acoustic transmitters and an array of recording receivers to estimate natural mortality, residence times, and rates of movements of lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) in a marine reserve in southeast Alaska. We surgically implanted acoustic tags in a total of 83 lingcod in December 1999 and July 2000, and distributed recording monitors with receiving ranges of at least 800 m throughout the reserve. The receivers were anchored on the seafloor in locations that resulted in overlapping receiving ranges, and thus created an array of receivers that completely encompassed an 8 km2 reserve. In this way, we were able to estimate natural mortality rates and track movements of tagged lingcod into and out of the reserve from December 1999 through October 2001. Acoustic tag results indicated that most of the tagged fish frequently left the reserve, but were only absent for short time periods. Tagged fish showed a high degree of site fidelity. The large number of signals received from tagged fish enabled us to generate models that provided a way to predict the effects of marine reserves on yield and eggs per recruit for a cohort of female lingcod.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2005-03-01

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  • The Marine Technology Society Journal is the flagship publication of the Marine Technology Society. It publishes the highest caliber, peer-reviewed papers on subjects of interest to the society: marine technology, ocean science, marine policy and education. The Journal is dedicated to publishing timely special issues on emerging ocean community concerns while also showcasing general interest and student-authored works.
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