Project

Does timidity towards lures cause differences in angling success between fished and unfished areas?

Goal: Elevated angling CPUE in unfished areas as opposed to regularly fished sites is a well documented phenomenon and may suggest higher abundance of fishes. However, catchability of previously unfished populations has been found to decrease sharply following the onset of angling, suggesting the capacity for learned hook avoidance. Moreover, vulnerability to angling lures has been found to be a heritable trait and fisheries selection may favour non-vulnerable individuals. In a field study conducted in 3 different MPAs and structurally similar adjacent areas open to recreational fishing we aim to disentangle the relationship between angling CPUE and other, perhaps less biased measures of abundance (Gill-netting, Camera-ROV transects and eDNA) to identify the relationship between angling success and fishing pressure and to what degree catch data can inform about underlying abundance. Moreover, lure cameras are used to quantify differences in pike biting behaviour towards lures between the areas as we expect the 'naive' pike in the MPA to be less hesitant and more agressive.

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Phillip Roser
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Elevated angling CPUE in unfished areas as opposed to regularly fished sites is a well documented phenomenon and may suggest higher abundance of fishes. However, catchability of previously unfished populations has been found to decrease sharply following the onset of angling, suggesting the capacity for learned hook avoidance. Moreover, vulnerability to angling lures has been found to be a heritable trait and fisheries selection may favour non-vulnerable individuals. In a field study conducted in 3 different MPAs and structurally similar adjacent areas open to recreational fishing we aim to disentangle the relationship between angling CPUE and other, perhaps less biased measures of abundance (Gill-netting, Camera-ROV transects and eDNA) to identify the relationship between angling success and fishing pressure and to what degree catch data can inform about underlying abundance. Moreover, lure cameras are used to quantify differences in pike biting behaviour towards lures between the areas as we expect the 'naive' pike in the MPA to be less hesitant and more agressive.