Broad-scale movements of commercially important sharks

Published online on 18. August 2017

Acoustic monitoring reveals the broad-scale movements of commercially important sharks

Matias Braccini, Kelly Rensing, Tim Langlois, Rory McAuley


Information on broad-scale movements is required for spatial management and improved conservation of large marine predators. We studied the mobility of the 4 most commercially important shark species of Western Australia (WA) using a network of acoustic receivers. Dusky sharks Carcharhinus obscurus showed very high mobility across WA. Sandbar C. plumbeus, gummy Mustelus antarcticus and particularly whiskery Furgaleus macki sharks were less mobile but can still move over long distances. The proportion of monitored time within different fisheries management zones varied among species. Dusky sharks showed the highest inter-connectivity among these zones, reflecting the high mobility and complex movement patterns of this species. Sandbar, gummy and whiskery sharks followed, showing less movement among zones. Our study demonstrates how acoustic telemetry can be used to determine the movement patterns of species at the scale of fisheries management and therefore contribute to improved management and sustainability.

Mar Ecol Prog Ser 577:121-129, doi: 10.3354/meps12251



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