Predictive Distribution Modeling of Two Demersal Fish Species at Condor Seamount, Azores (NE Atlantic)

Knowledge of spatial distribution of commercial fish species can be essential for sustainable deep-sea fisheries, although understanding species habitat-relationships in such deep environments can be challenging. In this study, species distribution models were used to investigate the influence of environmental variables on two commercially important demersal fish species in the Azores and predict their distributions at the Condor seamount, an area closed to fishing since 2010. The two species, the blackspot seabream, Pagellus bogaraveo and the bluemouth, Helicolenus dactylopterus display completely different behavioral patterns and have contrasting life histories. Generalized additive mixed models combined with landscape information of the seamount identified suitable deep sea areas for both species. The distribution of P. bogaraveo at the Condor seems to be allied with diel migrations of mesopelagic organism. While some distribution patterns of H. dactylopterus may be associated to former fishing activities in the seamount. While model predictions need to be carefully interpreted, future management of the Azorean fishery should account for distribution aspects of demersal fish species at seamount scales.

Promotor(s) & Supervisor: Gui Manuel Machado Menezes, Eva Giacomello

ISCED Categories

The highlighted icons, represent the fields of education (in compliance with ISCED Classification) engaged during this course/programme.

0831 - Fisheries", "0588 - Scientific modelling", "0522 - Conservation and environmental management