MEPS - Vol. 364 - Feature article

Sites that are appropriate for release of juvenile southern rock lobster Jasus edwardsii can be identified by means of tethering experiments. Painting: Hilary Oliver

Mills DJ, Johnson CR, Gardner C

 

Bias in lobster tethering experiments conducted for selecting low-predation release sites

 

Tethering experiments provide a simple method for quantifying in situ predation rates in mobile marine species. There are, nevertheless, concerns that artefacts may confound the results, particularly in comparing predation rates among sites. Mills and co-workers tested the application of tethering for identifying low-predation sites that are suitable for release of juvenile lobsters. The authors used remote video surveillance and mesocosm experiments to quantify the artefacts of tethering, demonstrating that artefacts differ among the major predators of juvenile lobsters. Results suggest that tethering trials are appropriate for selecting release sites only if complementary data on predator assemblages and on artefacts are collected with sufficient rigour to provide site-specific corrections.

 

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