Inter-Research > MEPS > v606 > p133-150  
Marine Ecology Progress Series

via Mailchimp

MEPS 606:133-150 (2018)  -  DOI:

Behavior of gray triggerfish Balistes capriscus around baited fish traps determined from fine-scale acoustic tracking

Nathan M. Bacheler1,*, Kyle W. Shertzer1, Jeffrey A. Buckel2, Paul J. Rudershausen2, Brendan J. Runde2

1Southeast Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, Beaufort, North Carolina 28516, USA
2Department of Applied Ecology, Center for Marine Sciences and Technology, North Carolina State University, Morehead City, North Carolina 28557, USA
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Most reef fish surveys use bait to attract individuals to bite hooks, enter traps, or be counted on underwater video. The behavior of fish around baited gears, however, is poorly understood despite its importance for estimating catchability. We used a fine-scale acoustic positioning system to elucidate the movement behaviors of 11 telemetered gray triggerfish Balistes capriscus around 54 baited fish traps deployed at a 37 m deep site in Raleigh Bay, North Carolina, USA. Median positional error rates from a reference transmitter were 1-2 m, suggesting fish positions were accurate and precise. Overall, 104170 spatial positions were determined for gray triggerfish over the 42 d study. There were 27 instances of telemetered gray triggerfish responding to baited fish traps. These fish responded from initial distances up to 312 m (mean = 68 m) from traps and spent 4-95% (mean = 35%) of their time within 20 m of traps. Using generalized additive models, we determined that telemetered gray triggerfish were most likely to respond to baited traps when they were initially located close to (<100 m), and down-current from, baited traps. There were substantial differences in gray triggerfish responses and water clarity across the 3 recapture periods, suggesting gray triggerfish use vision, olfaction, and perhaps sound to locate bait. Our modeling approach is general, and could be used to quantify the behavior of myriad organisms around sampling gears in various types of aquatic systems.

KEY WORDS: Animal behavior · Bait · Telemetry · Vemco positioning system · Movement · Baited remote underwater video station · BRUVS · Trap · Reef

Full text in pdf format 
Cite this article as: Bacheler NM, Shertzer KW, Buckel JA, Rudershausen PJ, Runde BJ (2018) Behavior of gray triggerfish Balistes capriscus around baited fish traps determined from fine-scale acoustic tracking. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 606:133-150.

Export citation
RSS - Facebook - - linkedIn