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Title: Movements of hatchery-reared dusky groupers released in a Northeast Atlantic Coastal Marine Protected Area.
Authors: Silva, A.F.
Horta e Costa, B.
Costa, J.L.
Pereira, E.
Marques, J.P.
Castro, J.J.
Lino, P.G.
Candeias-Mendes, A.
Pousão-Ferreira, P.
Sousa, I.
Bentes, L.
Gonçalves, J.M.S.
Almeida, P.R.
Quintella, B.R.
Keywords: Epinephelus marginatus
acoustic biotelemetry
ranging behavior
Restocking trials
Issue Date: Jun-2022
Publisher: MDPI
Citation: Silva, A.F.; B. Horta e Costa; J.L. Costa; E. Pereira; J.P. Marques; J.J. Castro; P.G. Lino; A. Candeias-Mendes; P. Pousão-Ferreira; I. Sousa; L. Bentes; J.M.S. Gonçalves; P.R. Almeida; B.R. Quintella (2022). Movements of hatchery-reared dusky groupers released in a Northeast Atlantic Coastal Marine Protected Area. Journal of Marine Science and Engineering, 10(7): 904.
Abstract: No-take areas are key instruments to promote the effectiveness of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), particularly concerning the protection of endangered species such as the dusky grouper (Epinephelus marginatus). However, despite the establishment of no-take areas and the prohibition of catching this species in a southwestern Portuguese MPA (SACVMP—‘Sudoeste Alentejano’ and ‘Costa Vicentina’ Marine Park) since 2011, there is still no evidence of population recovery. By using acoustic biotelemetry, this work aimed to evaluate the feasibility of restocking hatchery-reared adult dusky groupers in two no-take areas within the SACVMP. In 2019 and 2021, thirty groupers were tagged with acoustic transmitters and the site attachment and movements of the groupers were assessed in the releasing sites (no-take areas). None of the tagged fish settled down in either of the areas, leaving the no-take areas mainly at dusk and night. Some individuals displayed extended movements of more than a hundred kilometers along the Portuguese coast which was rarely reported for this species. At least in some coastal stretches, those movements were performed close to the shore, which may evidence the importance of coastal MPAs to protect and promote the connectivity of species more associated with rocky reef habitats. Following studies should focus on the conditions that promote site attachment and fidelity by hatchery-reared dusky groupers so that future large-scale restocking programs can be successful in MPAs with appropriate habitats.
Type: article
Appears in Collections:BIO - Publicações - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais Com Arbitragem Científica

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