Carmel Bay Lingcod (2005-2006)

Lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) comprise a major component of recreational and commercial fisheries along the west coast of North America, yet populations have fluctuated dramatically in recent years. For fisheries managers, knowing how Lingcod move over space and time will be useful for creating stock models, designing marine protected areas and deciding when and where seasonal fishery closures should occur. Identifying movement patterns can also aid in understanding ecological processes such as predation, competition, tropic interactions and habitat associations.

Ashley Greenley, a recent MLML graduate student, completed her thesis project investigating movement patterns of Lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) over different time scales in the nearshore environment.  Specifically, she investigated the following questions:

1. Are Lingcod primarily residents or just visitors to the subtidal environment of Carmel Bay?

2. Do movement rates and/or patterns vary between the sexes or among size classes?

3. Are Lingcod movements associated with time of day, season, water temp or tide?

4. Does the depth distribution of Lingcod change throughout the year?

5. Are movement patterns and site fidelity similar in areas of high and low relief?

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