Evaluating Effects of Exploitation on Annual Apparent Mortality Rates of Paddlefish Using Mark–Recapture Data
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Knowledge of the effects of exploitation on population dynamics is critical to effective conservation and management of fish populations. To improve our understanding of the effects of sport fishery exploitation on populations of Paddlefish Polyodon spathula, we tested eight additive and compensatory harvest mortality hypotheses for the Paddlefish population in Lake Francis Case (LFC), South Dakota, with 33 years of tag recovery data using dead recovery models in Program MARK. We evaluated additive and compensatory harvest mortality hypotheses by modeling the effects of sport fishery closures on annual apparent survival and tag recovery rates. Our most-supported hypotheses indicated that exploitation prior to the functional closure of the sport fishery (i.e., when exploitation became negligible) was an additive source of mortality. Annual apparent mortality estimates (i.e., 1 ¡ annual apparent survival) of our most-supported model decreased from 0.237 (SE D 0.036) to 0.110 (SE D 0.063) following the functional closure of the sport fishery and coincided with a decrease in recovery rate from 0.095 (SE D 0.015) to 0.010 (SE D 0.004). These results suggest that relatively unregulated sport fishery exploitation can substantially increase mortality rates of Paddlefish populations. The effects of exploitation on mortality likely differ between populations and temporally within populations due to differences in density-dependent mortality rates.
Transactions of the American Fisheries Society
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Taylor & Francis
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Pierce, Landon L.; Graeb, Brian; Wilis, David W.; and Soreson, Jason S., "Evaluating Effects of Exploitation on Annual Apparent Mortality Rates of Paddlefish Using Mark–Recapture Data" (2015). Natural Resource Management Faculty Publications. 62.
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