Home range estimates for squaretail coralgrouper, Plectropomus areolatus (Rüppell 1830)

Hutchinson, N., and Rhodes, K.L. (2010) Home range estimates for squaretail coralgrouper, Plectropomus areolatus (Rüppell 1830). Coral Reefs, 29 (2). pp. 511-519.

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The aim of the study was to estimate home range areas and distance of movement away from a squaretail coralgrouper (Plectropomus areolatus) spawning aggregation site located within a small-scale 1.5 km2 Marine Protected Area (MPA) in Pohnpei, Micronesia. Fifteen P. areolatus were acoustically tagged and re-located within a ca. 50 km2 search area over a 4-month period that included reproductive and non-reproductive months. All relocated fish were found in areas of moderate to high coral cover either on the fore reef or inside the lagoon in home ranges of 0.048 ± 0.018 km2 (l ± S.E.). Variability in home range area (0.004–0.12 km2) and distance of movement from aggregation sites following spawning (0.02–23.0 km; 5.3 ± 3.6 km, l ± S.E.) was observed, but did not appear to be sex specific. Five of the six relocated individuals were found within 0.02–6.1 km of the aggregation. This evidence and that from recent tag-recapture studies of epinephelids suggest that a substantial proportion of individual P. areolatus spawning populations reside within close proximity to their respective aggregation sites. Reproductive populations could be protected by MPAs of moderate scale (10 s of km2) that include aggregation sites, migratory corridors and adjacent home range habitats.

Item ID: 40361
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 0722-4028
Keywords: Epinephelidae, Marine Protected Areas, home range, telemetry
Funders: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Pohnpei Office of Fisheries, College of Micronesia-Palikir, Conservation Society of Pohnpei
Projects and Grants: NOAA NA07NMF4630127
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2015 03:30
FoR Codes: 05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity @ 25%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0602 Ecology > 060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology) @ 75%
SEO Codes: 83 ANIMAL PRODUCTION AND ANIMAL PRIMARY PRODUCTS > 8302 Fisheries - Wild Caught > 830299 Fisheries- Wild Caught not elsewhere classified @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960808 Marine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 25%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960802 Coastal and Estuarine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 25%
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