A Biochemical Genetic Investigation of Spiny Lobster (Panulirus Argus) Stock Replenishment in Bermuda
The source of recruits to Bermuda's spiny lobster (Panulirus argus) stock was examined through allozyme electrophoresis. A total of eight polymorphic loci were scored in adults, sub-adults and juveniles; Ldh-1, Pgm, Gpi, Pep–D, Pep-B1, Pep-B2, Sod and Mdh-1. Four polymorphic loci were scored in post-larval stages, the remaining loci being lost due to weak activity and ontogenetic changes at settlement. No convincing evidence for population substructure was found within the Bermuda stock when genetically tested by sex, spatial distribution and size-class. Tests for macrogeographic heterogeneity using Menzies' (1981) data-base for Caribbean stocks was complicated by uncertainty regarding electromorph compatibility and temporal stability of allele frequencies. Comparisons with contemporary samples obtained from south Florida demonstrated no significant heterogeneity. Monthly post-larval samples were in genetic equilibrium and indistinguishable from Bermuda and Florida adult samples. These results are consistent with a single western Atlantic/Florida stock. Increased co-operation between Bermuda, Florida State and United States Federal authorities is therefore recommended for effective resource management. However, as significant self-replenishment has not been excluded by this study, and in view of stable annual post-larval recruitment and the recent exploitation rates being sustainable, current fisheries regulations in Bermuda appear appropriate.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 01 May 1993
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