Interspecific Competition as a Driver of Juvenile Spiny Lobster Abundance and Distribution

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Material Information

Title:
Interspecific Competition as a Driver of Juvenile Spiny Lobster Abundance and Distribution
Physical Description:
1 online resource (10 p.)
Language:
english
Creator:
Hart, John E
Publisher:
University of Florida
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date:

Thesis/Dissertation Information

Degree:
Master's ( M.S.)
Degree Grantor:
University of Florida
Degree Disciplines:
Interdisciplinary Ecology
Committee Chair:
BEHRINGER,DONALD CHARLES,JR
Committee Co-Chair:
LINDBERG,WILLIAM J
Committee Members:
ST MARY,COLETTE MARIE

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
competition -- hard-bottom -- lobster -- shelter
Interdisciplinary Ecology -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre:
Interdisciplinary Ecology thesis, M.S.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract:
Interspecific competition can strongly influence the population dynamics of competing species. However, the importance of competition and how to test for it has been vigorously debated. For economically important species such as the Caribbean spiny lobster (Panulirus argus) this is an important fishery management consideration. Anecdotal observations have pointed to an inverse relationship in abundance between juvenile stone crab (Menippe mercenaria) and juvenile spiny lobsters in the hard-bottom habitat of the Florida Keys. It is primarily during their vulnerable juvenile stages that these species have similar shelter requirements. I explored this relationship in mesocosm experiments to determine the competitively dominant species and field experiments to determine the effect of stone crab abundance on lobster abundance and distribution. My results showed that stone crabs are the dominant competitors regardless of the number of lobsters present, the presence of co-sheltering species such as the spider crab (Mithrax spinosissimus), or the order of introduction of competitors into the mesocosm. We also found that lobsters use chemical cues from stone crabs to detect and avoid them. Our manipulations of stone crab abundance demonstrated that increased stone crab abundance resulted in decreased lobster abundance and increased aggregation. The opposite occurred on stone crab removal sites. Our study suggests that stone crabs can limit the availability of shelter to lobsters, potentially increasing lobster mortality or driving them to emigrate from the area. If shelter is extremely limited or stone crab recruitment is high, competition may contribute to a population bottleneck for adult lobster populations that could reduce recruitment into the fishery.
General Note:
In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note:
Includes vita.
Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description:
Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description:
This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility:
by John E Hart.
Thesis:
Thesis (M.S.)--University of Florida, 2014.
Local:
Adviser: BEHRINGER,DONALD CHARLES,JR.
Local:
Co-adviser: LINDBERG,WILLIAM J.
Electronic Access:
RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2015-05-31

Record Information

Source Institution:
UFRGP
Rights Management:
Applicable rights reserved.
Classification:
lcc - LD1780 2014
System ID:
UFE0046833:00001