The Value of Habitat Diversity in Marine Reserves: Spiny Lobster and Sheephead Use of the Intertidal Zone at the Santa Catalina Island MPA Website
Carlos Robles - California State University, Los Angeles, Department of Biology
Corey Garza - California State University, Monterey Bay, Division of Science and Environmental Policy
Period: 2/1/2012 -
|Federal Funds:||State Funds:|
1. Conduct intertidal and subtidal surveys of lobsters foraging activities, sizes, and reproductive condition to further describe linkages between these habitats in the life cycle of the lobsters.
2. Assess the extent to which establishment of the reserve affected the sizes and frequency of reproductive lobsters using the intertidal habitat. This objective would make use of historical data sets of the senior PI.
3. Assess the apparent importance of the intertidal link for lobsters elsewhere in the Southern California Bight through a combination of habitat inventories and direct observations of selected sites outside of the Santa Catalina MPA.
4. Work with interested parties in the management community to develop an ecosystem-based management strategy for lobsters in Southern California.
1. Diver surveys on fixed transects in the intertidal zone and shallow subtidal zone of Big Fisherman Cove, Blue Cavern Point and Bird Rock will be replicated. Subtidal transects include marked lobster dens. The size, sex and reproductive condition will be noted. Hand collections of lobster will be made to corroborate reproductive condition and size estimates.
2. Time-lapse photographic series will be duplicated on intertidal sites used in surveys done prior to the establishment of the reserve. The time lapse methods provide unbiased samples because the brief duration of the flash goes undetected by the lobsters.
3. The pre-reserve surveys, both time lapse and diver transects (Robles unpublished data) would be duplicated to provide data for a Before-After/Control-Impact (BACI) analysis of reserve effects on the reproductive structure of the population.
4. Habitat inventories and analyses to provide an estimate of the extent of the coast that might support use of intertidal prey populations by reproductive lobsters would be made. Follow up field surveys would be used to confirm whether the phenomenon occurs at suitable sites. (We note that the PIs records of intertidal lobsters were drawn from the Catalina site and San Nicolas Island, the nearshore areas of which were off limits to civilians.)
1. The study would provide the management community with new insights into the habitat use and reproductive requirements of this economically and ecologically significant species, and possibly uncover benefits associated with protecting seemingly disparate habitats in the same reserve.
2. The study would provide evidence concerning the potential utility of an MPA in the vicinity of a large urban center -- juxtaposing adjacent areas of high use and rigorous protection.
3. This will be one of the few studies to present a BACI analyses of time series data encompassing years immediately before and after the establishment of the marine protected area. This, coupled with the use of direct census methods, will be a valuable complement to published studies of Catalina lobsters, which employed spatial comparisons of trapping data.
4. Because this project will be conducted at Wrigley USC, there is the potential to attract other researchers to the facility to study both fisheries impacts and the community dynamics within the MPA.
5. This project will also have educational benefits for students whose research may be funded as participants in this study.
Publications & other print media:
Hutchins, D. A., Fu, F. (2008). Linking the oceanic biogeochemistry of iron and phosphorus with the marine nitrogen cycle. pp. 1627-1666. Amsterdam: Nitrogen in the Marine Environment/Elsevier
CO2 concentration controls Trichodesmium nitrogen and carbon fixation rates, growth rates and elemental ratios", 2007 ASLO meeting, Talk/Oral Presentation, 2007-2008
"Does CO2 play a role in controlling N2 fixation across systems", 2008 Ocean Sciences Meeting, Talk/Oral Presentation, Orlando, Florida, 2007-2008
"Does CO2 play a role in controlling oceanic N2 fixation?", Ocean Carbon and Biogeochemistry workshop, Poster, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2007-2008
"Linking the future biogeochemical cycles of C, N, and Fe: Interactions between cyanobacterial N2 fixation and Fe limitation in a high CO2 ocean", NSF Ocean Carbon Biogeochemistry workshop, Poster, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, 2007-2008
"Rising CO2 and temperature effects on community dynamics of harmful and harmless estuarine algal groups", 2007 ASLO meeting, Talk/Oral Presentation, 2007-2008
"Efeccts of rising CO2 and temperature on the growth and photosynthesis of the marine raphidophyte Heterosigma and the dinoflagellate Prorocentrum minimum", ASLO, Poster, 2006-2007
Video, electronic, and computer products: