Avoidance behaviour in cod (Gadus morhua) to a bottom-trawling vessel
Institute of Marine Research, P.O. Box 1870 Nordnes, 5817 Bergen, Norway
2 Department of Mathematics, University of Bergen, P.O. Box 7800, 5020 Bergen, Norway
Corresponding author: email@example.com
Accepted: 18 December 2002
The reaction of fish induced by a trawling vessel was measured using the Bergen Acoustic Buoy. It is a free-floating buoy with a split beam echo sounder system. Individual fish trajectories were obtained by target tracking methods, and average swimming velocities as a function of depth and time before and after passage of the vessel was calculated. A measure for the change in behaviour was applied, showing a significant response during and after propeller passage. The change in horizontal displacement speed is significant at all depths, while the change in vertical displacement velocity is significant at all but one layer of depth. The horizontal reaction seems to occur a bit later than the diving reaction. After the main response, a slightly higher mean horizontal displacement speed was observed for the deepest layers. This indicates a change in the fish state after being exposed to the vessel/gear.
Key words: Cod avoidance / Target tracking / Abundance estimates / Acoustic buoy / Bottom trawl
© Elsevier, IRD, Inra, Ifremer, Cemagref, 2003