eCite Digital Repository

Intensive fishing of marine consumers causes a dramatic shift in the benthic habitat on temperate rocky reefs


Strain, EMA and Johnson, CR, Intensive fishing of marine consumers causes a dramatic shift in the benthic habitat on temperate rocky reefs, Marine Biology, 159, (3) pp. 533-547. ISSN 0025-3162 (2012) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2011 Springer-Verlag

DOI: doi:10.1007/s00227-011-1833-1


Intensive fishing can cause dramatic, long- lasting shifts in benthic habitat. This study used three approaches to test whether overharvesting of blacklip abalone (Haliotis rubra) can cause a shift in benthic habitat to a configuration that is unsuitable for abalone, on the east coast of Tasmania, Australia. After 18 months of removing abalone from rocks, encrusting red algae (ERA) became overgrown by filamentous and foliose algae, sessile invertebrates and accumulated sediment. The differences in the community composition between locations, sites nested within locations and rocks were minor. Throughout the study, abalone were largely associated with areas of rock covered in ERA but avoided other habitats. A transplant experiment demonstrated that abalone preferred areas of rock covered in ERA but move away from overgrown rocks. These results suggest overharvesting of abaloneresults in a shift to benthic habitat poorly preferred by abalone. This could form a positive feedback loop that limits recovery of abalone populations and ERA

Erratum DOI: dio:10.1007/s00227-011-1859-4

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Terrestrial systems and management
Objective Field:Assessment and management of terrestrial ecosystems
UTAS Author:Strain, EMA (Dr Beth Strain)
UTAS Author:Johnson, CR (Professor Craig Johnson)
ID Code:77766
Year Published:2012
Web of Science® Times Cited:7
Deposited By:Zoology
Deposited On:2012-05-25
Last Modified:2021-09-22

Repository Staff Only: item control page