Virginia Institute of Marine Science
Ices Journal Of Marine Science
Depletion methods are widely used to estimate capture efficiency and abundance. However, they are highly dependent on the depletion area assumed. In open-ocean depletion studies, it is difficult to determine the true area of depletion. Satellite vessel monitoring systems (VMS) offer the potential to determine the area effectively fished. Observer-collected catch-and-effort data from the 1999 Atlantic sea scallop fishery in Georges Bank Closed Area II were used to obtain spatially-explicit DeLury depletion estimates of dredge efficiency and abundance, with corrections for fished area made using VMS data. Non-area-corrected efficiency estimates often had theoretically impossible values, indicating that the naively assumed fished area was likely too big. Fine-scale spatial analyses on individual depletion cells confirmed this result. Corrected-area efficiency estimates exhibited reduced variability and more plausible efficiencies, with 70% of 289 individual depletion estimates failing between 20% and 55%, with a mean of 46%. Abundance estimates from individual depletion studies matched maps of abundance from a preseason survey. Results indicated a total abundance of similar to 17 million pounds of scallop meat weight in the fished area, of which 6 million pounds were landed, providing an overall exploitation rate of 35%.
Scallop Placopecten-Magellanicus; Georges Bank; Sea Scallops; Movement
Walter, JF; Hoenig, JM; and Gedamke, T, "Correcting for effective area fished in fishery-dependent depletion estimates of abundance and capture efficiency" (2007). VIMS Articles. 996.