TitleHabitat-based submersible assessment of macro-invertebrate and groundfish assemblages at Heceta Bank, Oregon, from 1988 to 1990
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsTissot, BN, Hixon, MA, Stein, DL
JournalJournal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology
Type of ArticleJournal Article

Exploitation of groundfish off the U.S. Pacific coast reached maximum levels during the 1990s, resulting in severe declines in at least nine species of groundfish. From 1988 to 1990, we used the 2-man submersible Delta to make 42 dives and run replicate visual belt transects at six stations ranging from 67-360 in in depth at Heceta Bank on the outer continental shelf of Oregon. We identified four major habitats and associated benthic macro invertebrate and groundfish assemblages: (1) shallow rock ridges and large boulders ( 200 in) dominated by fragile urchins, sea cucumbers, shortspine thornyhead, and flatfishes. Although substantial interannual variation in groundfish abundance among seafloor types was evident in the 12 most abundant and/or commercially important fish taxa sampled, high variance resulted in statistically significant differences among years only in juvenile rockfishes. These data provide a baseline for future comparisons exploring long-term change this continental-shelf ecosystem. (c) 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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