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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 617-618:183-198 (2019)  -  DOI:

Portuguese purse seine fishery spatial and resource overlap with top predators

Laura Wise1,*, Catarina Galego2, Isidora Katara1,3, Ana Marçalo4,5, Ana Meirinho2, Sílvia S. Monteiro5,10, Nuno Oliveira2, Jorge Santos5,6,7, Pedro Rodrigues5,6,7, Hélder Araújo5,6,7, José Vingada5,6,8, Alexandra Silva1,9

1Portuguese Sea and Atmosphere Institute, 1749-077 Lisbon, Portugal
2SPEA - Portuguese Society for the Study of Birds, 1070-062 Lisbon, Portugal
3Cefas - Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science, Lowestoft, Suffolk NR33 0HT, UK
4Centre of Marine Sciences (CCMAR), University of the Algarve Campus de Gambelas, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
5Department of Biology & Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM), University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
6Portuguese Wildlife Society, University of Minho, Department of Biology, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal
7Campus do Mar, International Campus of Excellence, CP 36.310 Vigo (Pontevedra), Spain
8Department of Biology & CBMA - Center for Molecular and Environmental Biology, University of Minho, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal
9MARE - Marine and Environmental Sciences Centre Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade de Lisboa Campo Grande, 1749-016 Lisbon, Portugal
10Present address: Department of Environment and Planning & Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies (CESAM), University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
*Corresponding author:
Advance View was available online September 6, 2018; subsequently updated September 20, 2018

ABSTRACT: The Portuguese purse seine fishery, with average annual catches of 70000 tonnes, operates mainly in coastal areas and targets small pelagic fish (SPF). Potential competition for resources may occur between the fishery and some species of marine mammals and seabirds, as suggested by observed incidental catches. For those species directly affected by the fishery, the spatial distribution of marine taxa and the fishing fleet are key pieces of information for spatial planning and management. We analysed the spatial and resource overlap between the fishery’s distribution and effort, and the distribution and abundance of 6 species of top predators—seabirds (n = 4) and marine mammals (n = 2) between 2010 and 2014. Estimates of annual consumption by top predators and the fishery catch within the distributional range of one of their main prey species (sardine Sardina pilchardus) were also determined. Spatial overlap between all considered species and the fishery was low (<0.221), and only 2 species (common dolphins Delphinus delphis and Cory’s shearwaters Calonectris borealis) showed high resource overlap with the fishery (>0.7). Overall, values of consumption of SPF by the top predators were of the same order of magnitude as mean annual purse seine landings for the studied area. Our results can be used for marine spatial planning, including designation of Marine Protected Areas and the development of an ecosystem-based model for the effective management of the Portuguese purse seine fishery that takes into account the consumption of natural predators.

KEY WORDS: Spatial overlap · Resource overlap · Competition · Marine mammal · Seabird · Fisheries · Pelagic fish · Prey availability

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Cite this article as: Wise L, Galego C, Katara I, Marçalo A and others (2019) Portuguese purse seine fishery spatial and resource overlap with top predators. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 617-618:183-198.

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