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Individual study: Spatially explicit dispersal dynamics and equilibrium population sizes in marine harvest refuges

Published source details

Acosta C. (2002) Spatially explicit dispersal dynamics and equilibrium population sizes in marine harvest refuges. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 59, 458-468


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Designate a Marine Protected Area with a zonation system of activity restrictions Subtidal Benthic Invertebrate Conservation

A site comparison study from 1997–2001 of two coral reef, seagrass and sandy seabed areas in Glover’s Reef marine reserve, western Caribbean Sea, off the coast of Belize (Acosta 2002) found that between five and eight years after designating a marine protected area with a zonation system, abundances of adult spiny lobster Panulirus argus and adult queen conch Strombus gigas increased in a zone closed to all fishing and were greater than in a zone where commercial fishing occurred. Abundance of adult lobsters (>45 mm carapace length) increased in the closed zone (after four years in 1997: 21; after eight years in 2001: 84 lobsters/ha) and was greater than in the fished zone where abundance did not change (1997: 13; 2001: 26). Abundance of adult conch (>110 mm shell length) increased in the closed zone (1997: 244, 2001: 921 conch/ha), and was greater than in the fished zone where abundance did not change (1997: 296, 2001: 188). Abundance of juvenile lobsters and conch did not vary over time or differ between zones. The reserve was established in 1993, with a general use zone open to commercial fishing and a zone prohibiting all fishing. In each zone inside the reserve, divers counted and measured lobsters (in eight 0.5 ha coral reef patches/zone) and conch (in twenty-four 200 m2 transects on sand/zone) at quarterly intervals in 1997–2001.

(Summarised by Anaëlle Lemasson & Laura Pettit)