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Capture-induced physiological stress and postrelease mortality for southern bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) from a recreational fishery


Tracey, SR and Hartmann, K and Leef, M and McAllister, J, Capture-induced physiological stress and postrelease mortality for southern bluefin tuna (Thunnus maccoyii) from a recreational fishery, Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 73, (10) pp. 1547-1556. ISSN 0706-652X (2016) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2015 The Authors

DOI: doi:10.1139/cjfas-2015-0516


Southern bluefin tuna (SBT; Thunnus maccoyii) are a popular component of the recreational large pelagic game fishery in Australia. The fishery is managed using individual fisher catch limits. Fifty-nine pop-up archival transmitting (PAT) tags were attached to individual SBT to estimate postrelease survival (PRS) rates. Fish caught on lures configured with J-hooks (n = 44) and those caught on circle hooks (n = 8) had similar PRS rates and were combined to increase sample size, revealing a PRS estimate of 83.0% (95% CI: 75.9%90.7%, n = 54). The PRS estimate of fish caught on lures with treble hooks was much lower, 60% (95% CI: 20%100%, n = 5). By sampling blood from 233 fish, including 56 of the PAT-tagged individuals, we show that angling duration is related to an elevation of lactate, cortisol, and osmolarity in blood plasma, indicative of increased physiological stress. Physical damage related to hooking location, angling duration, biochemical indicators of physiological stress, and handling duration were not identified as significant factors leading to postrelease mortality. The results quantify a previously unaccounted source of mortality for SBT.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:southern bluefin tuna, post-release survival, recreational fishing
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Fisheries sciences
Research Field:Aquaculture and fisheries stock assessment
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Fisheries - wild caught
Objective Field:Fisheries - wild caught not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Tracey, SR (Associate Professor Sean Tracey)
UTAS Author:Hartmann, K (Dr Klaas Hartmann)
UTAS Author:Leef, M (Dr Melanie Leef)
UTAS Author:McAllister, J (Dr Jaime McAllister)
ID Code:111131
Year Published:2016
Web of Science® Times Cited:9
Deposited By:Sustainable Marine Research Collaboration
Deposited On:2016-08-31
Last Modified:2017-11-03

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