Felipe Amezcua

Felipe Amezcua
Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México | UNAM · Institute of Ocean Sciences and Limnology

PhD

About

76
Publications
13,772
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870
Citations
Introduction
Plastic and microplastic content in marine and estuarine fishes. Ecology of estuarine systems Small scale fisheries Population demography of elasmobranchs
Additional affiliations
March 2001 - present
Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
Position
  • Professor
Education
August 1996 - September 2000
University of Liverpool
Field of study
  • Marine Biology

Publications

Publications (76)
Article
Globally, there is concern about the concentrations of some metals and metalloids in sharks and the associated impacts to themselves and to human consumers. Concentrations of Hg, Cd, and Se reported in muscle, liver and fins of sharks from all the world were reviewed to define geographical patterns of elemental distribution, to model the baseline c...
Article
The presence of microplastics has been reported in the marine environment and these pollutants have also been reported in food webs. Information about the presence of microplastics in the Haller's Round Ray (Urobatis halleri) and bottom sediments off the east coast of the Gulf of California is non-existent. The digestive tracts of individuals of th...
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Oxygen minimum zones (OMZs) are currently expanding across the global ocean due to climate change, leading to a compression of usable habitat for several marine species. Mercury stable isotope compositions provide a spatially and temporally integrated view of marine predator foraging habitat and its variability with environmental conditions. Here,...
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In this study, the concentrations of Cd and Hg were measured in muscle of juvenile individuals at an importan fishing ground in southeastern Gulf of California to assess the health risk to human consumers considering elemental levels and rate of shark consumption in NW Mexico. Twenty-eight individuals were sampled in September 2019. Quantification...
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The population genetic structure and female philopatry to nursery grounds of the scalloped hammerhead shark (Sphyrna lewini) were studied in different mangrove estuaries along the Mexican Pacific coast containing putative nurseries. These nurseries were grouped into northern (Sinaloa-Nayarit), central (Jalisco), and southern (Oaxaca-Chiapas) region...
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Assessing mercury (Hg) biomagnification requires the description of prey-predator relationships, for each species and ecosystem, usually based on carbon and nitrogen isotope analyses. Here, we analyzed two seabirds from the Humboldt Current ecosystem, the Guanay cormorant (Phalacrocorax bougainvillii) and the Peruvian booby (Sula variegata), as wel...
Article
Large marine predators exhibit high concentrations of mercury (Hg) as neurotoxic methylmercury, and the potential impacts of global change on Hg contamination in these species remain highly debated. Current contaminant model predictions do not account for intraspecific variability in Hg exposure and may fail to reflect the diversity of future Hg le...
Article
Plastic particle occurrence in the digestive tracts of fishes from a tropical estuarine system in the Gulf of Cali-fornia was investigated. A total of 1095 fish were analysed, representing 15 species. In total 1384 particles of plastic debris were recovered from the gastrointestinal tracts of 552 specimens belonging to 13 species, and all consisted...
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The trophic ecology of wetlands with mangrove forests remains poorly understood. Through the use of stomach contents analysis, stable isotope signatures, and Bayesian mixing models, the food web of a tropical wetland in the gulf of California was investigated. Consumers had heterogeneous diets, omnivores were the most abundant species (47%), follow...
Article
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Using a new method to study migratory routes of scalloped hammerhead sharks, Dr Claire Coiraton and Dr Felipe Amezcua, based at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, identified a more complex picture than previously thought. It turns out that not all sharks follow the same pattern of movements, with some preferring to stay in coastal areas...
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The identification of interspecific links (trophic niche) is important to characterize resource use of a predator, and to know its trophic role (for example, mesopredator or top predator) in the food web. In this study, we examined: a) the trophic ecology of Scomberomorus sierra as a predator (niche breadth, trophic overlap, and trophic position) a...
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The scalloped hammerhead shark Sphyrna lewini is a migratory species that exhibits complex patterns of spatial organization associated with the use of both coastal and oceanic habitats. Information about its movements and habitat use is fragmentary and recent study showed that elemental signatures deposited in its vertebrae served as reliable site-...
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Vertebral microchemistry recently allowed to infer the migration patterns of the scalloped hammerhead shark Sphyrna lewini in the Mexican Pacific, however conclusions regarding the movements of reproductive females were hindered by the small sample size. Considering that S. lewini is a placental viviparous species, maternal supply of nutrients to t...
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The influence of salinity and temperature on larval fish assemblages, as well as, temporal and vertical patterns on larval fish assemblages off the inlet of the Presidio River, southeast coast of the Gulf of California were evaluated. Samplings for ichthyoplankton and environmental parameter measurements were carried out at three depths, in five sa...
Article
With the aim of assessing health risk to shark consumers, cadmium, mercury, and selenium were measured in muscle of Sphyrna lewini from four coastal states (Baja California Sur, Sinaloa, Nayarit, and Colima) in western Mexico. According to length of specimens, three age modes were found: juveniles and neonates (the majority of the individuals), pre...
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The food webs of a coastal lagoon ecosystem in the southeastern Gulf of California were investigated through the use of stomach contents analyses and carbon (δ¹³C) and nitrogen (δ¹⁵N) stable isotopes of fish and macroinvertebrates. Food sources and species representative of primary producers and primary-to-tertiary consumers were examined. Macroinv...
Article
The age of 296 juvenile scalloped hammerhead sharks Sphyrna lewini caught by several fisheries in the Mexican Pacific Ocean from March 2007 to September 2017 were estimated from growth‐band counts in thin‐sectioned vertebrae. Marginal‐increment analysis (MIA) and centrum‐edge analysis (CEA) were used to verify the periodicity of formation of the gr...
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The effect of hydrological connectivity of the fish assemblages was assessed on a floodplain in the SE Gulf of California, Mexico using a before–after control-impact (BACI) design. Community structure attributes of species abundance, biomass, richness, diversity, and differences in the structure of fish assemblages were compared between two periods...
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Biological parameters pertaining to the reproductive ecology of the Panamic Grunt Pomadasys panamensis were investigated in 788 individuals sampled from the southeastern Gulf of California between November 2009 and October 2010. Length frequency distributions and mean TLs differed between sampling areas, with organisms from the coastal population e...
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We assessed human health risk due to mercury (Hg) concentrations in fish from three coastal lagoons (Urías, Huizache, and Teacapán) in the SE Gulf of California. We also determined Hg distribution in muscle and liver of analyzed ichthyofauna and compared the results among studied areas according to tissue, season, and lagoon system by using multiva...
Article
Estuarine systems in subtropical and tropical areas of the Mexican Pacific are characterized by specific hydrological, biological, and anthropogenic conditions. Using multivariate analyses of geomorphic, biological, and anthropogenic variables, five of the largest estuarine systems of the southeastern Gulf of California were classified into estuary...
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Background. There is a current global consensus that to achieve a sustainable use of fisheries resources, management of every organism subject to exploitation is required rather than only those targeted directly by the fisheries. Further understanding the feeding habits of the species in the ecosystem as well as the predator–prey relationships and...
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We determined the levels of Cd and Pb in liver and muscle of demersal fish from three lagoon systems (Ur?as, Huizache, and Teacap?n) in the SE Gulf of California with the purpose of comparing the studied metals in fish from the three ecosystems and to assess the potential human health risk. Considering the number of individuals, the sequence of fis...
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Sphyrna lewini es una de las especies de tiburón más frecuentes en las pesquerías artesanal y semi-industrial; sin embargo, existe poca información sobre su distribución y su estructura de tallas a pesar de su importancia pesquera y ecológica, lo que dificulta la instrumentación de medidas de manejo. Se describe la distribución de longitudes de cap...
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The trophic ecology of the chihuil sea catfish Bagre panamensis was studied through high-resolution variations in its feeding habits and trophic position (TP) in the SE Gulf of California, relevant to sex, size and season. The combined use of stomach content (SCA) and stable isotope analysis (SIA) allowed us to perform these analyses and also estim...
Article
The White and Striped mullets (Mugil curema and M. cephalus) are highly abundant and commercially important estuarine fish in northwest (NW) Mexico. Because of their feeding habits and habitat, they are likely to accumulate mercury (Hg) in their muscle and liver. The objectives of this study were to determine total Hg distribution in the tissues of...
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Members of the International Fisheries Section of the American Fisheries Society are an extremely diverse group, representing many fisheries disciplines and nations. We have common interests in the biology, management, and conservation of fisheries on a global scale and promote the interaction of fisheries and aquatic science professionals worldwid...
Article
Nutrient pollution causes environmental damages on aquatic ecosystems worldwide. Eutrophication produces impacts in coastal ecosystems, affecting biota and ecosystem services. The Urias coastal lagoon (SE Gulf of California) is a sub-tropical estuary under several environmental pressures such as nutrient inputs from shrimp farm effluents and dredgi...
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Following a four-year period of writing, member comment, and multiple revisions, the AFS Position Paper and Policy on Mining and Fossil Fuel Extraction was approved unanimously by the membership at the Society's annual business meeting August 19, 2015, in Portland, Oregon. The entire document can be read at fisheries.org/policy_statements; a brief...
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An ecosystem-based management of fisheries requires a proper estimation of the trophic position (TP) of each component of the food web. Stable isotope analysis (SIA) and stomach contents analysis (SCA) are used to estimate TP of aquatic systems, but few studies have compared the results obtained from both methods. We used SIA (d15N) and SCA (TrophL...
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The Panama grunt is an abundant and commercially important species in the southeastern Gulf of California, but the research undertaken on this species is scarce despite its ecological and economic importance. We studied the feeding habits of Panama grunt through stomach content analyses as a first step towards understanding the biology of this spec...
Chapter
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The contributed papers in this book provide research undertaken in estuarine systems of Mexico and Central America that aim to provide a scientific basis for proper estuarine management. The book is divided in three parts that cover topics associated with fisheries management and regulations: physicochemical studies, ecological studies and socioeco...
Chapter
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The estuarine system of Marismas Nacionales (Pacific coast of Mexico) is a Biosphere Reserve that is considered to be the most extensive mangrove region in the American Pacific, and an important region for artisanal fisheries since prehispanic times. Significant hydrological changes occurred in this region after 1976 when an artificial channel was...
Chapter
Artisanal fisheries in the estuarine systems of Mexico are poorly regulated due to fishery complexity and the lack of information on the biology of exploited species, their habitat and fishing methods. Due to these unknowns and to utilize existing catch data (i.e., landing date, catch and landing site, catch per species, and price), this chapter pr...
Article
With the aim of determining Hg distribution in muscle and liver of bycatch fish from Guerrero state in the Eastern Pacific Ocean and assess the potential risk to consumer, Hg was quantified in 14 species of bycatch fish. For the majority of fish the order of Hg levels was liver > muscle. The highest concentration corresponded to the liver of Isopis...
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The composition and seasonal changes of the fish assemblage in a coastal lagoon system in southeastern Gulf of California were assessed from December 2001 to July 2005. A total of 20,877 organisms belonging to 191 species and 47 families were analyzed. We determined that almost all the species inhabiting the system were found; however some rare spe...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Marismas Nacionales is a marine flood plain system located in the pacific coast of Mexico considered the most extensive mangrove region of the American Pacific. This region is an important region for fisheries since prehispanic times with high biodiversity and an important wintering region for migratory birds from Canada and USA. Significant hydrol...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Artisanal fisheries in the estuarine systems of Mexico are poorly regulated because the complexity of this activity and the lack of information on the biology of the exploited species, their habitat and the fishing methods. Looking for alternative ways of developing a fisheries management plan with the available information (i.e. landing date, catc...
Article
Baseline Hg concentration in bycatch fish from the SE Gulf of California were determined in muscle and liver of 19 species. Levels of Hg in muscle were compared with legal limits of this element in national and international legislation. Considering all fish species, mean concentrations in liver (2.458±1.997μgg(-1)) were significantly higher (p<0.0...
Conference Paper
Shrimp-trawl fisheries globally are estimated to produce one third of the total fishery discards. In the Gulf of California this bycatch is dominated by fish that have a low survival rate after capture, even if discarded, and this includes juvenile fish of commercial and non-commercial species. Although some fish are sold commercially the amount of fish...
Article
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Mean Cd trend in the muscle of omnivorous (O), planktivorous (P), benthopelagic-carnivorous (BPC), and benthic carnivorous (BC) fish of one lagoon of NW Mexico was BPC > BC > P > O (0.89, 0.59, 0.55 and 0.24 μg g(-1)). That of Pb was P > BC > O > BPC (1.07, 0.48, 0.17 and 0.04 μg g(-1)). In the liver Cd was P > BPC > O > BC (5.09, 2.40, 2.07 and 1....
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The cominate sea catfish from the southeastern Gulf of California is an important species that is commercially exploited. However, studies on biology of this species are scarce; therefore, harvest regulations do not exist for this species in Mexico. The aim of this work was to describe reproductive biology of Occidentarius platypogon. Gillnet sampl...
Conference Paper
On June 3rd, 1979, at the Ixtoc I oil platform in the southern Gulf of Mexico, a major oil spill occurred. This incident was considered among the 3 most important oil spills in history because of the quantity of oil that was released to sea (560 million L). PEMEX (the Mexican oil company) together with the National University of Mexico (UNAM) under...
Chapter
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The chihuil sea catfish Bagre panamensis from the southeastern Gulf of Cali-fornia is an important species that is commercially exploited. Currently, the species is thought to have relatively high abundances. However, studies on biology of this species are scarce; therefore, harvest regulations do not exist for this species in Mexico. The aim of th...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Specimens of sailfish and striped marlin from the Gulf of California were analyzed for As, Cd, Hg, and Pb concentrations. More than 20% of the As and Cd levels exceed the guideline levels of the World Health Organization (WHO), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and the European Union. About 65-90% of the specimens exceeded the limit value for...
Article
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Feeding habits of the toothed flounder Cyclopsetta querna caught in the south-east Gulf of California were studied. Specimens were collected via demersal fish surveys. Results of this study show that C. querna is a predator that focuses on fish inhabiting the bottom and in particular on tonguefish (Symphurus sp.), midshipman fish (Porichthys sp.) a...
Article
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The feeding habits of the Panamic flounder Cyclopsetta panamensis caught in the SE Gulf of California were studied. The specimens were collected by demersal fish surveys during the years 2004-2008. The panamic flounder is a predator focusing mainly on crustaceans inhabiting the bottom belonging to Squillidae and Penaeidae. The diet of the Panamic f...
Article
Seventeen sailfish (Istiophorus platypterus; 166-246 cm long) and 13 striped marlin (Tetrapturus audax; 159-254 cm long) specimens from the southern Gulf of California were analyzed for As, Cd, Hg, and Pb concentrations. More than 20% of the As and Cd levels exceeded the guideline levels of the World Health Organization (WHO), the U.S. Food and Dru...
Article
Full-text available
The feeding habits of the Panamic flounder Cyclopsetta panamensis caught in the SE Gulf of California were studied. The specimens were collected by demersal fish surveys during the years 2004-2008. The panamic flounder is a predator focusing mainly on crustaceans inhabiting the bottom belonging to Squillidae and Penaeidae. The diet of the Panamic f...
Article
The yellow snapper (Lutjanus argentiventris) in the SW Gulf of California is being heavily fished and little information exists on status of this exploited population. From August 2001 to May 2003, 440 specimens in the size range of 10.8–59 cm were collected from four fishing areas: Huizache-Caimanero, Mazatlan, Marmol and Santa María la Reforma in...
Article
Variation of mercury (Hg) in sediments and biota from Coatzacoalcos estuary during the dry, rainy and windy seasons was estimated. In sediments, Hg concentrations ranged from 0.07μg g−1 in site 13 (Ixhuatepec) located upstream, to 1.06μg g−1 in site 3 (Coatzacoalcos river), located in the industrialized area. Highest enrichment factor (EF) and inde...
Article
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Fishing gear used in artisanal penaeid shrimp fisheries in the southwestern Gulf of California usually consists of the trawl net, gill net, and suripera net. These net types are known to capture a high quantity of fish bycatch and are likely to cause high levels of juvenile fish mortality. However, juvenile bycatch mortality has not been documented...
Article
The length–weight relationship of 21 species of fish from a coastal lagoon in the southwestern Gulf of California was estimated. These species were obtained as bycatch from the artisanal shrimp fishery. A total of 8522 specimens were used to estimate the parameters of the relationship, as well as at least 100 organisms per species. Differences betw...
Article
A specimen of drab tonguefish, Symphurus melanurus, measuring 241 mm in Total length (TL) was fished with an otter trawl at a depth of 5 m, off the Pacific coast of northern Mexico. Its length is 30% greater than the maximum known length for the species. A Student t-test (P>0.05) determined that this specimen belongs to a different, perhaps older c...
Article
The biomass of the finfish as bycatch of the shrimp-trawl fishery in the southeastern Gulf of California was estimated by use of a heuristic approach for fish biomass, by the use of the central-tendency hypotheses on the proportion of fish landed, the proportion of fish in the bycatch estimated in our work, and from data available from previous stu...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Un caso de estudio para Sphyrna lewini (Griffith y Smith, 1834). Durante los años de 2003 al 2005 se realizaron once muestreos en Teacapan, Sinaloa, colectando 532 individuos (266 hembras y 266 machos), se utilizaron 44 vértebras de hembras (52 cm a 270 cm de longitud total) y 65 de machos (47 a 245 cm de longitud total) para la determinación de la...
Article
The age of the spotted rose snapper Lutjanus guttatus over the continental shelf of the southeastern Gulf of California was estimated by examining transverse sections of their sagittal otoliths. Individuals (238) collected from summer 2001 to spring 2003 were analyzed. Ages were assigned based on counts of alternating opaque and translucent zones (...