Experimental mycobacteriosis in striped bass Morone saxatilis
Multi-year tag-recovery models can be used to derive estimates of age- and year-specific annual survival rates and year-specific instantaneous fishing and natural mortality rates. The latter, which are often of interest to fisheries managers, usually can only be estimated when the tag-reporting rate (lambda) and the short-term tag-induced mortality and tag-shedding rate (phi) are known a priori. We present a new multi-year tagging model that permits estimation of instantaneous mortality rates independently of philambda provided tagged animals from two adjacent size groups are released simultaneously. If the two size groups comprise animals just above and below the minimum harvestable size limit, then it is possible to estimate year-specific instantaneous fishing and natural mortality rates after 2 yr of tagging and tag-recovery. In addition to the standard assumptions of multi-year tag-recovery models, it is necessary to assume that recruited animals have equal selectivity, pre-recruited animals become fully recruited in 1 or 2 yr, and the size groups experience the same natural mortality rate. Applicability of the model to the Tasmania southern rock lobster (Jasus edwardsii) fishery is evaluated using a simulation model and parameters based on data from the lobster fishery; assumptions are likely to be met and precision should be adequate if at least 1000 animals are tagged per year in each size group. (C) 2003 International Council for the Exploration of the Sea. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.