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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 493:185-194 (2013)  -  DOI:

Spatial scaling of juvenile–adult associations in northwest Atlantic sea scallop Placopecten magellanicus populations

Jonathan D. Carey1,3,*, Richard A. Wahle2, Kevin D. E. Stokesbury1

1Department of Fisheries Oceanography, School for Marine Science and Technology, University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Massachusetts 02719, USA
2School of Marine Sciences, University of Maine, Darling Marine Center, Walpole, Maine 04573, USA
3Present address: Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Olympia, Washington 98501, USA

ABSTRACT: High resolution images from 2008 and 2009 video surveys of Georges Bank and the Mid-Atlantic Bight were used to examine the association between juvenile and adult sea scallops over a range of spatial scales. Nearest neighbor and correlation analyses indicate that juvenile and adult scallops were negatively associated at small scales (cm) and positively associated at larger scales (>km) in both areas and years. However, the tipping point from negative to positive association occurred at a 10- to 100-fold larger spatial scale in the Mid-Atlantic than on Georges Bank. In both years, stronger negative correlation coefficients occurred in the Mid-Atlantic Bight. Differences between the Mid-Atlantic Bight and Georges Bank, with respect to larval supply, habitat quality and post-settlement movement and mortality are possible explanations that remain to be examined. The potential differences in population dynamics between these areas should be of interest to fishery managers and considered when devising harvest strategies in order to ensure the most efficient management of this valuable resource. This study presents an analysis method that has the potential to be a useful tool in understanding the spatial dynamics of populations and examining interactions both within and between species over a range of spatial scales.

KEY WORDS: Placopecten magellanicus · Sea scallop · Juvenile · Optical survey · Georges Bank · Mid-Atlantic Bight · Spatial scale patterns

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Cite this article as: Carey JD, Wahle RA, Stokesbury KDE (2013) Spatial scaling of juvenile–adult associations in northwest Atlantic sea scallop Placopecten magellanicus populations. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 493:185-194.

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