Population dynamics of an unexploited rockfish (Sebastes jordani) in the California current

Population dynamics of an unexploited rockfish (Sebastes jordani) in the California current

J.C. Field, E.J. Dick, M. Key, M. Lowry, Y. Lucero, A. MacCall, D. Pearson, S. Ralston, W. Sydeman, and J. Thayer

Population dynamics of an unexploited rockfish (Sebastes jordani) in the California currentThis is part of Biology, Assessment, and Management of North Pacific Rockfishes
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Description

The shortbelly rockfish, Sebastes jordani, is one of the most abundant rockfish species in the California Current, and is a key forage species for many fish, birds, and marine mammals. This species has not been the target of commercial fisheries, and consequently catch data are limited. Nevertheless, available evidence suggests that the population has undergone significant fluctuations in abundance over the last several decades, presumably in response to variable environmental conditions. We present a population model, using standard methods and a variety of both traditional and untraditional data, to investigate population changes for this ecologically important species. The results from this analysis provide an opportunity to consider the dynamic nature of an unexploited rockfish population, and should ultimately provide insight into the potential causes and consequences of natural population variability on both exploited and non-exploited populations throughout the California Current.

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