Effects of kelp canopy removal on young-of-the-year rockfish abundance, using two census methods

Houk, James L. and McCleneghan, Kim (1993) Effects of kelp canopy removal on young-of-the-year rockfish abundance, using two census methods. Monterey, CA, California Department of Fish and Game, Marine Resources Division, (Marine Resources Administrative Report, 93-5)

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Abstract

In 1976 an experimental research project was initiated to examine the possible effects of the removal of a giant kelp, Macrocystis pyrifera, canopy in a central California kelp bed on Young-of-the-Year (YOY) fish populations. A total of 7823 fishes was captured and marked using freeze branding. Pre-canopy removal population estimates were made using the Schnabel method and post-canopy removal population estimates were made using the Petersen method (Lincoln Index). A significant (p < .0004) reduction of fish occurred immediately after the canopy was removed and the population remained at a reduced level for at least 60 days. This information warranted the creation of a second expanded project. In 1977 we established three study areas consisting of a kelp bed to be harvested (C), a kelp bed not to be harvested (NC) and a control kelp bed. We captured and marked over 82,000 YOY fish in Areas C and NC. Using the same statistical methods from the 1976 study, a significant reduction was found to occur in fish populations within harvested Area C and unharvested area NC: however, the reductions were not significantly different between the two areas. The large reduction in the fish population in the harvested area occurred when fish moved into the unharvested area. The large, unexpected reduction in fish numbers in the unharvested area (NC) occurred when larger predatory YOY bocaccio moved into the control area (X) as the experimental area (C) was being harvested. The bocaccio removed in excess of 20% of the biomass of YOY blue rockfish, which was composed of resident fish and recently migrated fish from the harvested kelp bed. Predation on YOY blue rockfish was also evident in the harvested area. Population estimates using visible fish transects by divers correlated well with population estimates from the capture/recapture studies in 1976, but correlation was poorer the following year when many more fish were present. (32pp.)

Item Type: Monograph or Serial Issue
Title: Effects of kelp canopy removal on young-of-the-year rockfish abundance, using two census methods
Personal Creator/Author:
CreatorsEmail
Houk, James L.
McCleneghan, Kim
Series Name: Marine Resources Administrative Report
Number: 93-5
Date: 1993
Publisher: California Department of Fish and Game, Marine Resources Division
Place of Publication: Monterey, CA
Latitude: 36.3736
Longitude: 121.546
Issuing Agency: California Department of Fish and Game
Uncontrolled Keywords: giant kelp; Macrocystis pyrifera; bocaccio rockfish; Sebastes paucispinis; Blue rockfish; Sebastes mystinus
Subjects: Fisheries
Biology
Item ID: 377
Depositing User: Joan Parker
Date Deposited: 23 Oct 2007 17:25
Last Modified: 29 Sep 2011 22:09
URI: http://aquaticcommons.org/id/eprint/377

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