The dynamics of small-scale patchiness of plaice and sole as reflected in the catch rates of the Dutch beam trawl fleet and its implications for the fleet dynamics

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Abstract

Catch rates of sole Solea solea and plaice Pleuronectes platessa in the Dutch beam trawl fleet operating in the North Sea show spatio-temporal variation. The variation in catch rates reflects differences in abundance of the species. Up to 45% of the variation in catch rates can be explained by the time of day of the catch, the engine power of the vessel and the migration cycles of the species. Also, spatial covariance was found in the residual variation for both species using variograms and covariance functions. The ranges of the spatial structure were found to be between approximately 20 to 45 nautical miles, indicating patchy distribution of the species. No differences in the ranges of the spatial structures were found between different seasons. Cross-covariance analysis shows the patches lasted up to two weeks. The implication of the spatial pattern in flatfish for the dynamics of effort allocation is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)100-112
JournalJournal of Sea Research
Volume58
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2007

Keywords

  • north-sea plaice
  • pleuronectes-platessa l
  • ideal free distribution
  • shelf nw spain
  • spatial-distribution
  • competitive interactions
  • geostatistical analysis
  • effort allocation
  • fishing vessels
  • diel variation

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