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Movement and harvesting mortality of American lobsters (Homarus americanus) tagged inside and outside no-take reserves in Bonavista Bay, Newfoundland

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Abstract:

To determine the potential effectiveness of no-take reserves in sustaining fisheries for American lobster (Homarus americanus), lobster movement and survival were quantified both within and outside of two no-take reserves in Bonavista Bay, Newfoundland, during 1997–1999. Most (58.7%) tagged lobsters were recaptured in the immediate vicinity of their original capture location. Among lobsters that moved, 77.1% traveled less than 1000 m. Lobster movement resulted in some exchange between no-take reserves and nearby harvested areas (8.7% of lobsters recaptured were in an area different from their location of tagging). Overall, little evidence was found for a relationship between lobster movement and sex, size, or time at large. Annual harvesting mortality accounted for up to 71.9% for lobsters eligible for harvest. However, many more lobsters tagged outside of no-take reserves were harvested (11.5–71.9%) than those tagged in no-take reserves (0.0–18.5%), a result of low frequency of movement between these areas. No difference was found between female and male mortality as a result of the fishery. Because the frequency of lobster emigration from reserves was relatively low and harvesting pressure outside of reserves was intense, results suggest that no-take reserves can offer increased survival to lobsters and thereby may provide benefits to fisheries.

Afin de vérifier le rôle potentiel des réserves sans captures (où toute cueillette est interdite) dans le maintien des pêches aux Homards d'Amérique (Homarus americanus), les déplacements et la survie des homards à l'intérieur et à l'extérieur de deux de ces réserves dans la baie de Bonavista, Terre-Neuve, ont été quantifiés en 1997–1999. La plupart des homards marqués (58,7%) ont été repris dans le voisinage immédiat du lieu de leur première capture. De plus, 77,1% de ceux qui s'étaient déplacés avaient parcouru moins de 1000 m. Ces déplacements ont généré un certain nombre d'échanges entre les réserves et les zones de pêche adjacentes (8,7% des homards repris se retrouvaient dans une région différente du point de leur marquage). En gros, il existe peu de preuves de l'existence d'une relation entre le déplacement, d'une part, et le sexe, l'âge et le temps écoulé depuis la libération, d'autre part. La mortalité annuelle due à la pêche affectait jusqu'à 71,9% des homards de taille réglementaire. Cependant, à cause de la basse fréquence des déplacements entre ces régions, beaucoup plus de homards marqués à l'extérieur des réserves (11,5–71,9%) que de homards marqués dans les réserves (0,0–18,5%) ont été capturés. Il n'y avait pas de différence dans les mortalités dues à la pêche chez les mâles et chez les femelles. Ces résultats indiquent que, comme l'émigration des homards hors des réserves est relativement faible et que la pression de la pêche à l'extérieur des réserves est intense, les réserves sans captures favorisent la survie accrue des homards et peuvent ainsi être bénéfiques aux pêches commerciales.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2001

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  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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