MEPS 542:187-193 (2016)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/meps11520

Fishing in the dark: the importance of integrating a nocturnal component into recreational fishing surveys

H. Diogo1,2,*, J. G. Pereira1

1IMAR – Institute of Marine Research and 2MARE – Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre, Universidade dos Açores, Departamento de Oceanografia e Pescas, 9901-862 Horta, Azores, Portugal
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: To get a complete picture of how fish assemblages are affected by recreational fishing it may be necessary to combine daytime and nocturnal sampling. Most of the scientific literature on recreational fishing, however, neglects the nocturnal component. Discrepancies between daytime and night-time catches in a shore angling fishery in the mid-Atlantic were investigated in this study. Significant diel patterns in catch composition, fish sizes, and catch rates were detected. Catch diversity was lower at night, although the species profile overlapped by 35.9%. Different fish sizes were targeted by the fishery when night and day periods were compared. Larger specimens of some commercially important species, e.g. Pseudocaranx dentex, were also caught at night. Findings highlight the importance of evaluating differences between day and night catches before defining a sampling design of a recreational fishing survey. If significant differences in diel patterns exist, the incorporation of a nocturnal component is necessary to avoid misrepresentation of the diversity and quantification of catch composition.


KEY WORDS: Diel patterns · Index of fish vulnerability · Nocturnal fishing · Shore angling · Roving creel survey


Full text in pdf format
Supplementary material 
Cite this article as: Diogo H, Pereira JG (2016) Fishing in the dark: the importance of integrating a nocturnal component into recreational fishing surveys. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 542:187-193. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps11520

Export citation
Mail this link - Contents Mailing Lists - RSS
- -