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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 149:289-294 (1997)  -  doi:10.3354/meps149289

Spatial distribution and an absolute density estimate of juvenile spot Leiostomus xanthurus in the tidal fringe bordering a North Carolina salt marsh

Stokesbury KDE, Ross SW

We used a nested quadrat design to precisely and accurately estimate the absolute density and spatial distribution of juvenile spot Leiostomusxanthurus in the tidal fringe of a salt marsh. Fifty white quadrats (10 of each size: 32, 64, 128, 256, and 512 cm2) were randomly placed within two 10 m2 plots adjacent to a pier. The number of fish over each quadrat was counted on 7 dates between 17 March and 7 April 1995. Quadrats did not attract or repel fish and the observer's experimental bias was low. L.xanthurus had a contagious distribution, with aggregations covering approximately 128 cm2. L.xanthurus densities ranged from 18.33 to 28.30 fish m-2 (3.0 to 5.9% level of precision), while densities estimated from shore seines ranged from 0.50 to 4.96 fish m-2 (97.2 to 200.0% level of precision). Correction factors should be estimated before fish density estimates derived from net samples are used in ecosystem modeling, carrying capacity estimates or vital statistics for this habitat.

Leiostomusxanthurus · Precision · Accuracy · Relative density · Absolute density · Spatial distribution · Quadrat · Shore seine

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