Northwest Fisheries Science Center

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Document Type: Journal Article
Center: NWFSC
Document ID: 1621
Title: Can data collected from marine protected areas improve estimates of life-history parameters?
Author: Thomas M. Garrison, O. S. Hamel, A. E. Punt
Publication Year: 2011
Journal: Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
Volume: 68
Issue: 10
Pages: 1761-1777
DOI: 10.1139/f2011-073
Keywords: Marine Protected Areas,Demographic Parameters,Natural Mortality,

One of the argued research-related benefits of marine protected areas (MPAs) to fisheries management is that because there is no fishing inside of an MPA, it may be possible to precisely estimate the rate of natural mortality and better determine growth and maturity rates, parameters that are often prespecified in stock assessments. This study assesses the degree to which having an MPA increases the ability to estimate these parameters in a integrated stock assessment model, Stock Synthesis; how long it would take for these benefits to be reflected in improved estimates of management quantities; and the extent to which these improvements will be reduced or lost if there is movement of adults (i.e., spillover) from the MPA to the fished area. A two-area, age- and length-structured simulation model is used to examine these benefits on estimation performance for Stock Synthesis. Given the data and process assumptions explored here, the extent of improvement in estimation of growth and maturity parameters with data collected from MPAs is small, but estimation of natural mortality is substantially improved compared with directly estimating these parameters using fishery data. The extent of this improvement depends on the degree of spillover and the complexity of the assessment model.

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Theme: Recovery, Rebuilding and Sustainability of Marine and Anadromous Species
Foci: Investigate ecological and socio-economic effects of alternative management strategies or governance structures.
Characterize vital rates and other demographic parameters for key species, and develop and improve methods for predicting risk and viability/sustainability from population dynamics and demographic information.
Official Citation: Garrison, Thomas M., Owen S. Hamel, André E. Punt. 2011. Can data collected from marine protected areas improve estimates of life-history parameters? Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 68(10): 1761-1777.