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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Publications posted here are typically legacy print or electronic-only publications of value to the Scripps researchers, by non-Scripps authors. Publication here is intended to make these works of value more readily available in an open access environment. Works by Scripps' scientists are published elsewhere on this Repository site.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 179. Contributions to the Biology of Central Valley Salmonids. Volumes 1 & 2.

Fish Bulletin 179. Contributions to the Biology of Central Valley Salmonids. Volumes 1 & 2.

(2001)

The Salmonid Symposium was organized by an ad hoc committee of state and federal fishery biologists concerned with the management of Central Valley salmon and steelhead trout (Oncorhynchus spp.) populations and their habitats. It was held at Bodega Bay, California on October 22–24, 1997. Topics covered included research on various Central Valley salmon and steelhead populations, ocean fishery management, history of upper Sacramento River hatchery operations, and steelhead management policy.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 177. Biological Aspects of Nearshore Rockfishes of the Genus Sebastes from Central California With Notes On Ecologically Related Sport Fishes

Fish Bulletin 177. Biological Aspects of Nearshore Rockfishes of the Genus Sebastes from Central California With Notes On Ecologically Related Sport Fishes

(1999)

Rockfishes of the genus Sebastes comprise one of the most important and heavily utilized groups of commercial and recreational fishes occurring off California. In this study, carried out primarily in the 1980s, we examined various aspects of life history for the nearshore rockfishes and for cabezon, kelp greenling, and lingcod off central California. The following species of rockfishes were those primarily considered within this study: black, black-and-yellow, blue, canary, China, copper, gopher, grass, green spotted, kelp, olive, rosy, starry, vermilion, yelloweye, and yellow-tail. During the study, 21 species of rockfish and 8 additional species of fish, including cabezon, kelp greenling, and lingcod, were tagged and released to study patterns of movement. Of 7332 tagged fish, 197 (3%) representing 15 species, were recaptured. Of these, only three species (canary and yellowtail rockfishes and lingcod) manifested substantial movement. Most nearshore rockfishes appear to be highly residential. Age and growth parameters were determined for 15 species of rockfish. Whole otoliths were the primary structure utilized for ageing. Most nearshore rockfishes examined appear to have lifespans of moderate longevity, with maximum ages between 20 and 30 years. Weight-length relationships were calculated for 16 species of rockfish and for cabezon, kelp greenling, and lingcod. Reproductive patterns were determined for 18 species of rockfish and size at sexual maturation for 17 of these species. The majority of nearshore rockfishes appear to release larvae during the winter-spring period. However, timing of larval extrusion is species specific and must be examined on a case-by-case basis. General food habits were described for 11 species of rockfish. An Appendix, summarizing life-history characteristics for the 17 most commonly encountered species in this study, is included. We conclude that the nearshore rockfishes are a valuable marine resource to the State of California and should be managed with the realization that, as with many of the world's fishery resources, they are vulnerable to human impacts and over exploitation.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 178. History And Status of Introduced Fishes In California, 1871 – 1996

Fish Bulletin 178. History And Status of Introduced Fishes In California, 1871 – 1996

(1997)

Unlike previous histories on the subject (the last being in 1976), this one is fully documented by primary references to the original publication or other sources. There are also explanations as to why some of the previous errors occurred.

The detailed history of each introduction, including the primary references, is given. The subsequent history and status of each species in California is given. The attitude of administrators, ichthyologists, fish culturists, fishery biologists, fishermen, and the public toward each introduction is given, and there is a discussion of their value. There is, with respect to California, a review of the present regulations concerning introduced fishes, and a prognostication of the future concerning them.

Approximately 111 full species of freshwater and euryhaline fishes occur in California. (Salton Sea fishes are excluded.) of these, 53 have been introduced from without the state and have been established successfully. Another five subspecies or races have become established. Twelve introduced fishes have uncertain status. Thirty-nine, including one marine fish which was deliberately introduced, have achieved no lasting success. Eight introduced fishes are listed as "hypothetical." Five were scheduled for introduction, but the introductions were never completed. Three species have been listed erroneously in scientific papers as having been introduced. About 26 other species have been formally suggested as introductions. Three species are likely candidates for introduction.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 176. The Marine Recreational Fishery In Northern and Central California : A Historical Comparison (1958–86), Status of Stocks (1980–86), and Effects of Changes In The California Current

Fish Bulletin 176. The Marine Recreational Fishery In Northern and Central California : A Historical Comparison (1958–86), Status of Stocks (1980–86), and Effects of Changes In The California Current

(1995)

Our study focused on the status of the marine recreational fishery along the northern and central California coast, where surveys of recreational fishing effort and catch were conducted from 1958–61 and from 1981–86. Between the two surveys, annual recreational fishing effort rose from 1.6 million fishing days to 2.7 million fishing days. Nearly all the increase was due to increases in fishing from boats (commercial passenger fishing vessels and private/rental boats). Annual recreational catch rose from 3.9 million fish weighing 2700 metric tons to 6.5 million fish weighing 5400 metric tons. The average number of fish caught per day decreased for fishing from piers (1.9 to 1.6), other shore areas (1.7 to 1.1), and private/rental boats (2.8 to 2.4), and increased from commercial passenger fishing vessels (5.4 to 6.0). The variety of different fish species caught in a typical day of fishing from boats decreased, but variety from shore increased. Direct expenditures in the fishery from 1981–86 were about $160 million per year (1992 dollars).

Rockfish (Sebastes spp.) dominated the catch from boats in both surveys. Between the two surveys, recreational catch of rockfish rose from 1.3 million fish to 3.4 million fish, while average weight per rockfish decreased from 0.82 kg to 0.71 kg. Average weight decreased in 12 of 16 major rockfish species. The 12 species were mainly shallow-water (m) species or species with wide depth ranges. The catch from boats shifted towards a higher proportion of deep-water (>73 m) species. Signs of population stress were found in blue rockfish S. mystinus (decrease in catch), canary rockfish S. pinniger and yellowtail rockfish S. flavidus (decrease in mean length in recreational and trawl catches and high incidence of sexually immature fish in recreational catch), and brown rockfish S. auriculatus (decrease in mean length and high incidence of sexually immature fish in recreational catch). Abrupt declines in lengths of blue rockfish and yellowtail rockfish occurred in central California between 1983 and 1984. Declines reflect mortalities that may in part be attributed to effects of the 1982–83 El Niño event. Mean weight per rockfish decreased in a north-to-south cline from Del Norte/Humboldt (1.13 kg) to San Luis Obispo (0.48 kg) in 1980–86. The major species generally had smaller fish and fewer successful year-classes in central California than northern California.

Catches of lingcod Ophiodon elongatus, a trophy species of importance to both boat and shore fishing, have been in slow oscillating decline since the early 1970s. It is unclear whether the decline is due to overharvest and is a long-term trend that will continue, or if it is due to natural population fluctuations.

Fishes of the surfperch family (Embiotocidae) dominated catch from shore in both surveys. of the fish groups we examined, the surfperch showed the greatest evidence of decline. Between the surveys, the weight of sport catch of surfperches declined by 54% and the weight of commercial catch declined by 26%. Barred surfperch Amphistichus argenteus and redtail surfperch A. rhodoterus (the two most important surfperches by number and weight landed), and also striped seaperch Embiotoca lateralis showed substantial decreases in recreational catch and average weight per fish. Commercial landings of redtail surfperch in the Eureka area declined by 54% from 1953 through 1992, despite a rise in price per pound. Commercial landings of barred surfperch in the Santa Barbara area rose by 118% from 1953 through 1992, perhaps due to a rise in price per pound. White seaperch Phanerodon furcatus stocks may have collapsed prior to the 1958–61 survey. Like rockfish, mean weight per surfperch decreased in a north-to-south cline from Del Norte/Humboldt (0.33 kg) to San Luis Obispo (0.22 kg) in 1980–86.

Populations of lingcod and five of six rockfishes examined for interannual length-frequency trends were found to be subject to wide variation in recruitment from year to year. Strong year-classes often dominated a species' catch for several consecutive years. Strong year-classes were not found to be established in the 1957–58 and 1982–83 El Niño periods.

Ten pelagic fish species (albacore Thunnus alalunga, bigeye tuna T. obesus, bluefin tuna T. thynnus, bullet mackerel Auxis rochei, Pacific mackerel Scomber japonicus, Pacific bonito Sarda chiliensis, skipjack Katsuwonus pelamis, yellowfin tuna T. albacares, dolphinfish Coryphaena hippurus, and California barracuda Sphyraena argentea) showed obvious northward shifts in the sampled recreational catch during the 1982–83 El Niño event. Eighteen other species showed less pronounced changes that may have been related to El Niño.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 175. The California Drift Gill Net Fishery For Sharks and Swordfish, 1981–82 Through 1990–91

Fish Bulletin 175. The California Drift Gill Net Fishery For Sharks and Swordfish, 1981–82 Through 1990–91

(1993)

California's drift gill net fishery developed rapidly in the late 1970s off southern California. The fishery originally targeted the common thresher Alopias vulpinus. Almost immediately swordfish Xiphias gladius and shortfin mako Isurus oxyrinchus became important components of the catch. We examined and summarized data obtained from the California logbook system, landing receipts, and market samples taken from this fishery over the 10 fishing seasons from 1981–82 through 1990–91. During this period the fishery evolved from a small nearshore experiment to a major California fishery. Significant changes in nearly every aspect of the fishery occurred including boats and gear, techniques and regulations, fishing areas and seasons, and targeted species. These data form a base line from which changes in the fishery and harvested stocks can be compared in the future. The drift gill net fishery operates primarily in the area between San Diego and Cape Mendocino and concentrates much of its effort on swordfish in the Southern California Bight during the months of May to December. During the period studied, fishing effort decreased 50% to 60%, from highs of approximately 11,000 sets to a low of about 4000 sets in the 1990–91 season. This decrease in effort corresponds to a decrease in total landings of approximately the same proportions. Decreases in landings of common thresher were over 80%, while swordfish and shortfin mako landings decreased 60% and 40% respectively. Average sizes of swordfish showed no change during the 1981–82 to 1990–91 fishing seasons. Average sizes of shortfin makos showed a decrease of approximately 40% from the 1982–83 through the 1985–86 fishing season, but rebounded during the 1989–90 season to within 15% of the 1982–83 season. Average sizes of common thresher, however, decreased 30% from the 1982–83 season and remained low. This may indicate a decline in the common thresher stock or reflect changes in the season and area of fishing operations. A number of problems and conflicts occurred during the first 10 years of the fishery (e.g. bycatch of marine mammals and striped marlin Tetrapturus audax) which were resolved for the most part through the cooperative efforts of the commercial industry, the sport industry, environmental groups, and State and Federal governments. The incidental catch of marine mammals is apparently low and not compromising any stocks, although the potential for damage remains and therefore monitoring is prudent. Bycatch of other fishes does not appear to be a problem except for the catch of blue sharks Prionace glauca, which has an unknown affect on local stocks.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 174. The California Halibut, Paralichthys californicus, Resource and Fisheries

Fish Bulletin 174. The California Halibut, Paralichthys californicus, Resource and Fisheries

(1990)

This Fish Bulletin, "The California Halibut, Paralichthys californicus, Resource and Fisheries," is the result of a 3-year process which began with an idea to hold a workshop to update management strategies. It soon became apparent that a diverse and relatively large group of academic, private, and government (state, federal, and local) scientists independently were either already conducting research or interested in developing, from historical databases, a better understanding of some aspects of the biology of, or fisheries for, California halibut. Because of the breadth of research and the level of interest, the California Department of Fish and Game developed the concept of holding a symposium to help fisheries managers better understand the status of current research, to identify areas where additional research is needed, and to publish this information in one peer-reviewed document. At this point, a committee of volunteers was formed and we began a timely team effort to plan and develop the symposium. To optimize the results of the symposium, a general call for papers was made inviting anyone involved with California halibut research to participate. Based upon the response, symposium sessions were established for: 1) Habitat, Distribution, and Early Life History; 2) Adult Life History; 3) Commercial Fisheries; 4) Recreational Fisheries; and 5) Management, Population Dynamics, and Fisheries Interactions. The symposium was held May 23–24, 1989 in San Pedro, California. It was sponsored by the California Department of Fish and Game, National Marine Fisheries Service, American Institute of Fishery Research Biologists, and the Cabrillo Marine Museum, whose staff also hosted the symposium. The symposium attracted approximately 150 people and included 25 papers authored or co-authored by scientists representing a diverse group of private and public organizations, which included: California State University, Northridge; Centro de Investigación Cientifica y Educación Superior de Ensenada (CISESE); Coastal Research Center, San Rafael; ERC-Environmental and Energy Services Company, Pacific Gas and Electric Diablo Canyon Laboratory; MBC Applied Environmental Sciences, Costa Mesa; MEC Analytical Sciences, Carlsbad; Minerals Management Service; Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County; Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla; University of California, Davis—School of Fisheries; University of California, Santa Barbara—Marine Science Institute; and the VANTUNA Research Group, Occidental College. The symposium was concluded with a panel discussion designed to gain perspectives from representatives of academia, the commercial and recreational fishing industries, and fisheries management on, "Where we should go with research and management as it relates to the California halibut."

After the symposium, we began the somewhat arduous task of extracting final draft papers from a group of contributors, many of whom had made a commitment above and beyond their regular workday requirements, and submitting these drafts for peer review. We thank the authors for their diligence and acknowledge the reviewers for their professional reviews and, most gratefully, timely responses.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 173. California Marine Fish Landings For 1977 – 1986

Fish Bulletin 173. California Marine Fish Landings For 1977 – 1986

(1990)

Landing bulletins provide basic catch records of amounts and values of marine resources taken by California's commercial fisheries plus summarizations of catches by the passenger-carrying fishing industry. These figures are of local, national, and international significance to those interested in the wise utilization and management of California's living marine resources.

This report for 1977 through 1986 is the 37th in a series stemming from the first gathering of commercial fisheries landing data by the California Department of Fish and Game in 1916 and the subsequent first publication of these catch data in 1929 for the years 1926 and 1927.

California's fishery statistics are based on a system where fish dealers, processors, and operators of passenger-carrying fishing vessels send duplicate copies of their landing records to the department. Fish Bulletin 86 (Bureau of Marine Fisheries 1952), which reported the catch for 1950, describes fully the system and methods used in collecting commercial fish records. Basic principles remain the same today as then, although some methods and equipment have changed. Young (1969) described the passenger-carrying vessel industry in Fish Bulletin 145.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 172. Life History, Environment, and Mariculture Studies of the Dungeness Crab, Cancer Magister,  With Emphasis on The Central California Fishery Resource

Fish Bulletin 172. Life History, Environment, and Mariculture Studies of the Dungeness Crab, Cancer Magister, With Emphasis on The Central California Fishery Resource

(1983)

This report describes the results of the California Department of Fish and Game's Dungeness Crab Research Program (1974–1980) plus several related studies and provides a detailed history of the California fishery. The Dungeness Crab Research Program was developed in response to a severe and sustained decline in central California Dungeness crab landings; this decline is the primary focus of the investigations presented in this report. Research results are presented for life history, environmental, and mariculture studies relating to egg, larval, juvenile, and adult stages of the Dungeness crab. Specific areas of study include stock identification; larval and juvenile dynamics focusing on movement, distribution, relative abundance, age and growth, and predation; impacts of commercial trawl fishing; ocean climate and its effects on life cycle stages and fishery landings; reproduction; pollution such as chlorinated wastewater, toxic trace elements, pesticides and PCB's, and hydrocarbons; and laboratory culture techniques. This report concludes with a summary of the Dungeness crab life cycle and research results and a discussion of management options and further research needs.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 171. Status of The Pacific Herring, Clupea Harengus Pallasii, Resource In California 1972 to 1980

Fish Bulletin 171. Status of The Pacific Herring, Clupea Harengus Pallasii, Resource In California 1972 to 1980

(1981)

The California Department of Fish and Game has conducted periodic studies on Pacific herring since 1953. This report concentrates on the period from 1972 through 1980 during which the herring fishery underwent a dramatic resurgence due to the opening of a lucrative market for herring roe in Japan. The spawning biomass of Pacific herring was estimated by determining numbers of eggs spawned and using previously derived estimates of eggs per gram of fish to convert this figure to short tons of herring. Spawning biomass estimates for Tomales Bay ranged from 4,728 tons in the 1974–75 season to 22,163 tons in the 1977–78 season. Estimates for San Francisco Bay ranged from 6,179 tons in 1973–74 season to 52,869 tons in the 1979–80 season. Sampling the roe fishery catch in Tomales and San Francisco Bays revealed that age 2 and 3 herring dominated the round haul fishery, and ages 5 and 6 dominated the gill net fishery. Gill nets consistently caught larger herring and a higher percentage of females than round haul nets. Comparison of length at age of herring from Tomales and San Francisco Bays revealed a statistical difference in growth rates between populations of the two bays. Tomales Bay herring are larger at a given age than San Francisco Bay herring. Spawning time was related to the tidal cycle in San Francisco Bay. From 1973 through 1976, 88% of all spawnings occurred when the daily high tide was at night. The resurgence of the fishery and evolution of current management strategies of quotas, seasons, and resource monitoring are discussed.

Cover page of Fish Bulletin 170. California Marine Fish Landings For 1976

Fish Bulletin 170. California Marine Fish Landings For 1976

(1979)

Landing bulletins provide basic catch records of amounts and values of marine resources taken by California's commercial fisheries plus summarizations of catches by the passenger carrying fishing industry. Small quantities of freshwater fish taken commercially in inland areas also are detailed. These figures are of local, national, and international significance to those interested in the wise utilization and management of California's living marine and freshwater resources.

This report for 1976 is the 36th in a series stemming from the first gathering of commercial fisheries landing data by the California Department of Fish and Game in 1916 and the subsequent first publication of these catch data in 1929 for the years 1926 and 1927.

California's fishery statistics are based on a system where fish dealers, processors, and operators of passenger carrying fishing vessels send duplicate copies of their landing records to the department. Fish Bulletin 86, which reported the catch for 1950, describes fully the system and methods used in collecting commercial fish records. Basic principles remain the same today as then, although some methods and equipment changed. Parke Young (1969) described the passenger carrying vessel industry in Fish Bulletin 145.