Preliminary data on cold-water corals and large sponges by-catch from Spanish/EU bottom trawl groundfish surveys in NAFO Regulatory Area (Divs. 3LMNO) and Canadian EEZ (Div. 3L): 2005-2007 period
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AuthorsMurillo, F.J. (Francisco Javier); Durán-Muñoz, P. (Pablo); González-Troncoso, D. (Diana); Serrano, A. (Alberto)
Vulnerable Marine Ecosystems
Marine Protected Areas
Since 2005, by-catch of vulnerable invertebrates, such as cold-water corals and large sponges, has been studied with special attention in the Spanish/EU bottom trawl groundfish surveys in Northwest Atlantic (NAFO Divs. 3LMNO). Based on this research, twenty-nine different taxa of cold-water corals have been preliminarily identified in the study area: five alcyonaceans, ten gorgonaceans, ten pennatulaceans, three solitary scleractinians and one antipatharian. No colonial scleractinians were recorded during these surveys and reef structures are unlikely to occur in the study area. The main large sponges found belong to the family Geodiidae. The volume of cold-water corals and large sponges in the by-catches was generally low in the regularly-used fishing grounds studied. Most of the by-catches were recorded in hauls carried out in areas outside of regular fishing grounds for the bottom trawlers. By-catches of large gorgonians were recorded in three small areas located in Divs. 3LM ...
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