MEPS - Vol. 391 - Feature article

Commercially harvested walleye pollock Theragra chalcogramma in Alaska. Image: Digitally altered watercolor of photograph from Alaska Fisheries Science Center, NOAA

Bacheler NM, Bailey KM, Ciannelli L, Bartolino V, Chan KS


Density-dependent, landscape, and climate effects on spawning distribution of walleye pollock Theragra chalcogramma


Little is known about the ways in which density-dependent and density-independent factors influence the spatial dynamics of fish spawning, despite their importance for recruitment. Using two novel analytical approaches, Bacheler and colleagues show that spawning biomass, water temperature, and ocean transport each affect the spawning dynamics of walleye pollock. The approaches allowed the authors to identify the unique spatial effects of these variables on walleye pollock spawning, e.g. spawning areas expanded in size at high levels of spawning biomass and contracted at low levels. These novel analytical approaches are useful tools to disentangle the complex forces acting upon the spatial dynamics of marine organisms.


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