Advertisement

Marine Biology

, Volume 157, Issue 12, pp 2625–2642 | Cite as

Vertical movements, behavior, and habitat of bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) in the equatorial eastern Pacific Ocean, ascertained from archival tag data

  • Kurt M. Schaefer
  • Daniel W. Fuller
Original Paper

Abstract

The results presented in this report are based on analyses of 16,721 days of data downloaded from 96 archival tags recovered from bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus; 54–159 cm in length, 0.97–5.44 years of age) at liberty from 31 to 1,508 days in the equatorial eastern Pacific Ocean. Analyses of daily timed depth and temperature records resulted in the classification of the data into three daily behavior types: characteristic, associative (associated with floating objects), and other. There is a significant positive correlation between the proportion of time fish exhibit characteristic behavior and increasing length, and significant negative correlations between the proportion of time bigeye exhibit associative and other behavior with increasing length. For the smallest (54–80 cm) to largest (100–159 cm) length classes, the vertical habitats utilized when exhibiting non-associative behaviors were 99 and 98% of the time above the thermocline depth (60 m) during the night, at the same average depth of 34 m, and 60 and 72% of the time below the thermocline during the day at average depths of 163 and 183 m, respectively. For the same smallest to largest length classes, when exhibiting associative behavior, the average nighttime and daytime depths were 25 and 21, and 33 and 37 m, respectively. The apparent effects of the environment on the behavior of the fish are discussed.

Keywords

Length Class Bigeye Tuna Eastern Pacific Ocean Floating Object Associative Behavior 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgments

This research was made possible through financial contributions by the Japan Fisheries Agency and the Taiwan Fisheries Agency. We are grateful for invaluable insights on the dynamics of FAD fishing in the EPO provided by Captains A. Parker and D. Stephenson. We are thankful to captain B. Blocker and his crew aboard the MV Her Grace for their relentless efforts in fishing and tagging operations. We are indebted to vessel owners, captains, fishermen, stevedores, and industry representatives for returning recovered tags. Thanks also to IATTC field office personnel for their efforts in recovering tags and recapture information. We thank Nick Vogel for his assistance with the development of computer programs for the processing of archival tag data for classifying daily behaviors. We also thank Tim Lam for his assistance in deriving a most probable movement path for the 4.1 year bigeye data set. We are grateful to B. Bayliff, R. Deriso, and two anonymous reviewers for constructive comments on drafts of the manuscript.

References

  1. Abascal FJ, Mejuto J, Quintans M, Ramos-Cartelle A (2009) Horizontal and vertical movements of swordfish in the southeast Pacific. ICES Jour Mar Sci 67:1–9Google Scholar
  2. Aires-da-Siva A, Maunder MN (2009) Status of bigeye tuna in the eastern Pacific Ocean in 2007 and outlook for the future. Inter-Amer Trop Tuna Comm Stock Assess Rept 9:101–202Google Scholar
  3. Anonymous (2008) Tunas and billfishes in the eastern Pacific Ocean in 2007. Fishery status report 6. Inter-Amer Trop Tuna Comm 140 ppGoogle Scholar
  4. Aoki K, Amano M, Yoshioka M, Mori K, Tokuda D, Miyazaki N (2007) Diel diving behavior of sperm whales off Japan. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 349:277–287CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bigelow K, Hampton J, Miyabe N (2002) Application of a habitat-based model to estimate effective longline fishing effort and relative abundance of Pacific bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus). Fish Oceanogr 11:143–155CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Block BA (2005) Physiological ecology in the 21st century: advancements in biologging science. Integr Comp Biol 45:305–320CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Block BA, Dewar H, Blackwell S, Williams T, Farwell CJ, Prince ED, Boustany A, Teo SLH, Seitz A, Fudge D, Walli A (2001) Electronic tags reveal migratory movements, depth preferences and thermal biology of Atlantic bluefin tuna. Science 293:1310–1314CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Blunt CE Jr (1960) Observations on the food habits of longline caught bigeye and yellowfin tuna from the tropical eastern Pacific 1955–1956. Calif Fish Game 46:69–80Google Scholar
  9. Brill R, Bigelow K, Musyl M, Fritsches K, Warrant E (2005) Bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) behavior and physiology and their relevance to stock assessments and fishery biology. ICCAT Col Vol Sci Pap 57:142–161Google Scholar
  10. Childress JJ, Seibel BA (1998) Life at stable low oxygen levels: adaptations of animals to oceanic oxygen minimum layers. J Exp Biol 201:1223–1232PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Dagorn L, Bach P, Josse E (2000) Movement patterns of large bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) in the open ocean, determined using ultrasonic telemetry. Mar Biol 136:361–371CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Dagorn L, Holland KN, Hallier JP, Taquet M, Moreno G, Sancho G, Itano DG, Aumeeruddy R, Girard C, Million J, Fonteneau A (2006) Deep diving behavior observed in yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares). Aquat Living Resour 19:85–88CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Evans K, Langley A, Clear NP, Williams P, Patterson T, Sibert J, Hampton J, Gunn JS (2008) Behaviour and habitat preferences of bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) and their influence on longline fishery catches in the western Coral Sea. Can J Fish Aquat Sci 65:2427–2443CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Fiedler P, Talley L (2006) Hydrography of the eastern tropical Pacific: a review. Prog Ocean 69:143–180CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Fiedler P, Barlow J, Gerrodette J (1998) Dolphin prey abundance determined from acoustic backscatter data in eastern Pacific surveys. Fish Bull 96:237–247Google Scholar
  16. Gilly WF, Markaida U, Baxter CH, Block BA, Boustany A, Zeidberg L, Reisenbichler K, Robison B, Bazzino G, Salinas C (2006) Vertical and horizontal migrations by the jumbo squid Dosidicus gigas revealed by electronic tagging. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 324:1–17CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Gunn JS, Block BA (2001) Advances in acoustic, archival, and satellite tagging of tunas. In: Block BA, Stevens ED (eds) Tunas: physiology, ecology, and evolution. Academic Press, San Diego, pp 167–224Google Scholar
  18. Hanamoto E (1987) Effect of oceanographic environment on bigeye tuna distribution. Bull Jap Soc Fish Oceanogr 51:203–216Google Scholar
  19. Holland KN, Sibert JR (1994) Physiological thermoregulation in bigeye tuna, Thunnus obesus. Environ Biol Fish 40:319–327CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Holland KN, Brill RW, Chang RKC (1990) Horizontal and vertical movements of yellowfin and bigeye tuna associated with fish aggregating devices. Fish Bull 88:493–507Google Scholar
  21. Josse E, Bach P, Dagorn L (1998) Simultaneous observations of tuna movements and their prey by sonic tracking and acoustic surveys. Hydrobiologia 371(372):61–69CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. King J, Ikehara I (1956) Comparative study of food of bigeye and yellowfin tuna in the central Pacific. US Fish Wildl Serv Fish Bull 57:61–85Google Scholar
  23. Kuznetsov I, Stefanov S, Savagov V (1982) A migrating sound scattering layer in the equatorial Pacific Ocean. Oceanology 22:702–703Google Scholar
  24. Lam CH, Nielsen A, Sibert J (2008) Improving light and temperature based geolocation by unscented Kalman filtering. Fish Res 91:15–25CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Le Gall JY, Cayre P, Taquet M (eds) (2000) Mechanisms and effects of the aggregation of tuna by FADs. Aqua Liv Res 13:181–262Google Scholar
  26. Leatherwood S, Evans WE (1979) Some recent uses and potentials of radiotelemetry in field studies of cetaceans. In: Winn HE, Olla BL (eds) Behavior of Marine Animals, current perspectives in research, vol 3. Plenum Press, New York-London, pp 1–31 CetaceansGoogle Scholar
  27. Longhurst AR (1976) Vertical migration. In: Cushing DH, Walsh JJ (eds) The ecology of the seas. Blackwell, London, pp 116–137Google Scholar
  28. Malte H, Larsen C, Musyl M, Brill R (2007) Differential heating and cooling rates in bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus Lowe): a model of non-steady state heat exchange. Jour Exp Biol 210:2618–2626CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Matsumoto T, Okamoto H, Toyonaga M (2006) Behavioral study of small bigeye, yellowfin and skipjack tunas associated with drifting FADs using ultrasonic coded transmitter in the Central Pacific Ocean. WCPFC-SC2-2006/FT IP-7Google Scholar
  30. Maunder M (2005) Report from the workshop on developing indices of abundance from purse-seine catch and effort data. Inter-Amer Trop Tuna Com Scientific meeting, November 3–5, 2004, La Jolla, CA (http://www.iattc.org/PDFFiles2/Report_PS_CPUE_meeting_Nov04ENG.pdf) (compiler)
  31. Maunder M, Hinton M, Bigelow K, Langley A (2006) Developing indices of abundance using habitat data in a statistical framework. Bull Mar Sci 79:545–559Google Scholar
  32. Maynard SD, Riggs FV, Walters JF (1975) Mesopelagic micronekton in Hawaiian waters: faunal composition, standing stock, and diel vertical migration. Fish Bull 73:726–736Google Scholar
  33. Ménard F, Stequert B, Rubin A, Herrera M, Marchal E (2000) Food consumption of tuna in the equatorial Atlantic Ocean: FAD-associated versus unassociated schools. Aquat Liv Res 13:233–240CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Musyl MK, Brill RW, Boggs CH, Curran DS, Kazama TK, Seki MP (2003) Vertical movements of bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) associated with islands, buoys, and seamounts near the main Hawaiian Islands from archival tagging data. Fish Oceanogr 12:152–169CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Roper CFE, Young RE (1975) Vertical distribution of pelagic cephalopods. Smithsonian Contrib Zool 209:51Google Scholar
  36. Roper CFE, Sweeney MJ, Nauen CE (1984) FAO species catalogue, vol. 3, Cephalopods of the world. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of species of interest to fisheries. FAO Fisheries Synopsis 3(125), p 277Google Scholar
  37. Schaefer KM, Fuller DW (2002) Movements, behavior, and habitat selection of bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) in the eastern equatorial Pacific, ascertained through archival tags. Fish Bull 100:765–788Google Scholar
  38. Schaefer KM, Fuller DW (2005) Behavior of bigeye (Thunnus obesus) and skipjack (Katsuwonus pelamis) tunas within aggregations associated with floating objects in the equatorial eastern Pacific. Mar Biol 146:781–792CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Schaefer KM, Fuller DW (2006) Estimates of age and growth of bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) in the eastern Pacific Ocean, based on otolith increments and tagging data. Inter-Amer Trop Tuna Comm Bull 23:32–76Google Scholar
  40. Schaefer KM, Fuller DW (2009) Horizontal movements of bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) in the eastern Pacific Ocean, as determined from conventional and archival tagging experiments initiated during 2000–2005. Inter-Amer Trop Tuna Comm Bull 24:191–247Google Scholar
  41. Schaefer KM, Fuller DW, Miyabe N (2005) Reproductive biology of bigeye tuna (Thunnus obesus) in the eastern and central Pacific Ocean. Inter-Amer Trop Tuna Comm Bull 23:1–31Google Scholar
  42. Schaefer KM, Fuller DW, Block BA (2007) Movements, behavior, and habitat utilization of yellowfin tuna (Thunnus albacares) in the northeastern Pacific Ocean, ascertained through archival tag data. Mar Biol 152:503–525CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Schaefer KM, Fuller DW, Block BA (2009) Vertical movements and habitat utilization of skipjack (Katsuwonus pelamis), yellowfin (Thunnus albacares), and bigeye (Thunnus obesus) tunas in the equatorial eastern Pacific Ocean, as ascertained through archival tag data. In: Nielsen JL, Arrizabalaga H, Fragoso N, Hobday A, Lutcavage M, Sibert J (eds) Reviews: methods and technologies in fish biology and fisheries, vol 9, tagging and tracking of marine animals with electronic devices. Springer, Berlin, pp 121–144CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Scott MD, Bayliff WH, Lennert-Cody CE, Schaefer KM (1999) Proceedings of the international workshop on the ecology and fisheries for tunas associated with floating objects. Inter Amer Trop Tuna Comm Spec Rep 11:480 (compilers)Google Scholar
  45. Tont SA (1976) Deep scattering layers: patterns in the Pacific. Rep Calif Coop Ocean Fish Invest 18:112–117Google Scholar
  46. Tyack PL, Johnson M, Soto NA, Sturlese A, Madsen PT (2006) Extreme diving of beaked whales. Jour Exp Biol 209:4238–4253CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Zar JH (1974) Biostatistical analysis. Prentice Hall, New JerseyGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Inter-American Tropical Tuna CommissionLa JollaUSA

Personalised recommendations