LIFE HISTORY STUDIES
MONKFISH REPRODUCTION SURVEY
Exploring non-lethal techniques for sex determination and evaluation of maturity stage of Southern New England monkfish (Lophius americanus)
Project Leads: Ricky Alexander and Luisa Garcia
Project Duration: 2018
Funding provided by NOAA/NMFS Monkfish Research Set-Aside (RSA) Grant Program
The project tests gross examination, endoscopy, ultrasound, histology, and hormone analysis as non-lethal detectors of sex determination and creates a reproductive profile based on sex and maturational stage of monkfish. Samples will be collected over two years where monkfish are abundant and commercially harvested using gillnets. Currently, no reliable method exists for non-lethal sex determination in monkfish. This project will provide a valuable reference guide and new tool(s) to determine sex and maturity stage. This allows researchers to identify spatiotemporal spawning habits while minimizing lethal impact to the stock, and allows rapid identification and monitoring of reproductive timing/intensity and sex ratio in monkfish. Additionally, information from this study informs managers on potential spawning areas, spawning frequency, and spawning seasonality in the Southern New England area where commercial monkfish effort is high.
Project Leads: Liese Siemann and Samir Patel, CFF, and Carl Huntsberger, University of Maine
Project Duration: 2015-2017
Funding provided by: Saltonstall-Kennedy Competitive Research Program
The primary objective of this project was to identify non-estuarine spawning locations of winter flounder (Pseudopleuronectes americanus) to show that spawning is taking place outside of estuaries in southern New England (SNE) to a substantial extent. The current essential fish habitat (EFH) described for winter flounder are estuarine and riverine habitats. However, more recent data gathered from trawl surveys and acoustic telemetry suggests that groups of winter flounder spawn outside of estuaries. The project maximizes fishing opportunities and jobs by providing information needed to define and protect essential fish habitat and reduce bycatch. Read full report.
All available CFF published studies and final reports can also be found on our Literature page.