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Quinn BK, Chassé J, Rochette R.2017. Potential connectivity among American lobster fisheries as a result of larval drift across the species’ range in eastern North America. PeerJ Preprints5:e2464v3https://doi.org/10.7287/peerj.preprints.2464v3
We used a bio-physical model to estimate for the first time the effect of larval drift on potential connectivity among American lobster (Homarus americanus) fisheries management areas over the geographic range of the species. The model predicted drift of larvae over distances of 50-805 km (mean = 129 km), which connected many management areas and caused marked spatial heterogeneity in retention and self-seeding versus export and import of larvae by different fisheries areas. Including mortality functions in the model resulted in less drift and settlement, and had complex effects on the amount, but not the incidence, of potential connectivity among fisheries. The model’s predictions received support from comparison of predicted settlement to landings six or seven years later in some (but not all) parts of the model domain. Although improvements are still needed to capture larval behaviours and spatial variability in larval release and mortality across the species’ range, this information is important to lobster fisheries management because the amount and direction of connectivity between fisheries can inform cooperative management strategies to sustain interconnected fisheries.
This is a preprint submission to PeerJ Preprints. This paper has been submitted to the Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, for consideration for publication in a special synthesis issue for the NSERC Canadian Fisheries Research Network. This is the second revised version of this preprint article