Spatiotemporal dynamics of the Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) Greenland fishery inferred from mixed-stock analysis

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Abstract:

Mixed-stock fisheries refer to the exploitation of admixed fish stocks coming from different origins. We identified the North American origin of 2835 Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) in the Greenland mixed-stock fishery during 11 years (1995–2006) at three localities using 13 microsatellites. The study included 52 baseline populations representing nine genetically distinct regional groups. The contribution of each group ranged from<1% (Maine) to 40% (Southern Québec). Decreasing temporal contributions were observed for Southern Québec (–22.0%) and New Brunswick (–17.4%), whereas an increasing contribution for Labrador (+14.9%) was observed during the time course of the study. The estimated regional contribution to the Greenland fishery was significantly correlated to the number of multi-sea-winter salmon regionally produced in 2002 (r = 0.79) and 2004 (r = 0.92). No difference in contribution was found between the three Greenland sampling localities. Ungava and Southern Québec regions showed the highest mortality estimates caused by the fishery, ranging from 12.10% to 18.08%, for both years tested. No regional group was overrepresented in landings compared with their respective productivity. Yet, management precautions should still be taken as the fishery strongly selects large females, which could have evolutionary impacts on populations over the long term.

L’appellation «pêcheries mixtes» réfère à l’exploitation de stocks de poissons provenant de diverses origines. Nous avons identifié l’origine de 2835 saumons atlantique (Salmo salar) pêchés au Groenland pendant 11 ans (1995–2006) à l’aide de 13 microsatellites. L’étude incluait 52 populations de référence, regroupées en neuf régions génétiquement distinctes. Les contributions régionales ont varié de<1 % (Maine) à 40 % (sud du Québec). Des diminutions de contribution temporelles ont été observées pour le sud du Québec (–22,0 %) et le Nouveau-Brunswick (–17,4 %) alors que celle du Labrador a augmenté (+14,9 %) au cours de la période à l’étude. Le nombre de rédibermarins produits régionalement et les niveaux de captures observées étaient corrélés pour 2002 (r = 0,79) et 2004 (r = 0,92). Aucune différence de contribution entre les régions du Groenland n’a été observée. L’Ungava et le sud du Québec ont montré les taux de mortalité due à la pêche les plus élevés, variant de 12,10 % à 18,08 %, pour ces deux années. Aucune région n’était clairement surreprésentée dans les débarquements par rapport à sa productivité. Néanmoins, le principe de précaution devrait être appliqué puisque cette pêcherie sélectionne les plus grosses femelles, ce qui pourrait engendrer des impacts évolutifs à long terme.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2009

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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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