Site Fidelity and Movement of Eight Species of Pacific Rockfish at a High-Relief Rocky Reef on the Oregon Coast Public Deposited

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  • We used acoustic telemetry techniques to study the movements of eight species of Pacific rockfish (genus Sebastes) inhabiting Siletz Reef, a high-relief rocky reef complex on the Oregon coast. Our primary interest was evaluating potential residence times for rockfish species in small, no-take marine protected areas (MPAs) like those recently designated for Oregon waters (337?1,502 ha). We tagged 6 black rockfish S. melanops, 31 canary rockfish S. pinniger, 9 yelloweye rockfish S. ruberrimus, 5 quillback rockfish S. maliger, and 2 copper rockfish S. caurinus, along with single specimens of china rockfish S. nebulosus, vermilion rockfish S. miniatus, and tiger rockfish S. nigrocinctus, and monitored their movements with a large (about 5,200-ha) receiver grid for over a year. Canary rockfish showed low site fidelity and wide-ranging movements that exceeded the scale of our detection grid and a wide range of vertical movements (up to 27 m). Quillback, vermilion, tiger, china, and some yelloweye rockfish showed high site fidelity, being detected only at one or two nearby receivers for a full year. The range of vertical movements of yelloweye, quillback, vermilion, and tiger rockfish was small, ranging from only 2?3 m for the single tiger rockfish to 3?13 m for four of the quillback rockfish. Black and copper rockfish showed site fidelity that was intermediate between that of canary rockfish and the other species. Black and copper rockfish showed a wide range in vertical movements (10?35 m and 2?33 m, respectively) within a month. Our results suggest that small, no-take MPAs located on high-relief rocky reefs would provide minimal protection for canary rockfish, some protection for black and copper rockfish, and greater protection for quillback, vermilion, tiger, and some yelloweye rockfish. Abstract We used acoustic telemetry techniques to study the movements of eight species of Pacific rockfish (genus Sebastes) inhabiting Siletz Reef, a high-relief rocky reef complex on the Oregon coast. Our primary interest was evaluating potential residence times for rockfish species in small, no-take marine protected areas (MPAs) like those recently designated for Oregon waters (337?1,502 ha). We tagged 6 black rockfish S. melanops, 31 canary rockfish S. pinniger, 9 yelloweye rockfish S. ruberrimus, 5 quillback rockfish S. maliger, and 2 copper rockfish S. caurinus, along with single specimens of china rockfish S. nebulosus, vermilion rockfish S. miniatus, and tiger rockfish S. nigrocinctus, and monitored their movements with a large (about 5,200-ha) receiver grid for over a year. Canary rockfish showed low site fidelity and wide-ranging movements that exceeded the scale of our detection grid and a wide range of vertical movements (up to 27 m). Quillback, vermilion, tiger, china, and some yelloweye rockfish showed high site fidelity, being detected only at one or two nearby receivers for a full year. The range of vertical movements of yelloweye, quillback, vermilion, and tiger rockfish was small, ranging from only 2?3 m for the single tiger rockfish to 3?13 m for four of the quillback rockfish. Black and copper rockfish showed site fidelity that was intermediate between that of canary rockfish and the other species. Black and copper rockfish showed a wide range in vertical movements (10?35 m and 2?33 m, respectively) within a month. Our results suggest that small, no-take MPAs located on high-relief rocky reefs would provide minimal protection for canary rockfish, some protection for black and copper rockfish, and greater protection for quillback, vermilion, tiger, and some yelloweye rockfish.
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  • Hannah, R. W., & Rankin, P. S. (2011, June). Site Fidelity and Movement of Eight Species of Pacific Rockfish at a High-Relief Rocky Reef on the Oregon Coast. North American Journal of Fisheries Management, 31(3), 483-494.
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