Temporal Patterns and Diversityof The Juvenile Fish Community In Albemarle Sound, North Carolina and The Effects Of Gear Type On Community Analysis

Monday, September 9, 2013: 1:40 PM
Marriott Ballroom B (The Marriott Little Rock)
Zachary D. Gillum , Howell Science Complex, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC
Anthony Overton , Biology, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC
The year class strength of many species is determined by the survival of larvae and juveniles so it is important to understand juvenile communities and their spatio-temporal variations. Juvenile fishes were sampled monthly by the North Carolina Division of Marine Fisheries from 1972 to present in Albemarle Sound, North Carolina. A combination of trawls and seines were used to collect samples. Over 50 families and 132 fish species were represented in samples. Freshwater, estuarine-dependent, and marine species were all represented in the samples. The most frequently occurring species in the seining samples were Menidia beryllina, Morone Americana, Leiostomus xanthurus, and Anchoa mitchilli. The most frequently occurring species collected by trawling were A. mitchilli, Micropogonias undulates, L. xanthurus, and M. Americana. The mean Shannon-Wiener index for the seine (3.00 ± 0.75 SD: Range-0.86-3.77) was slightly higher than in the trawls(2.91 ± 0.31 SD: Range-1.77-3.34). There were clear cyclical patterns in the Shannon-Wiener index but the patterns differed between both gears. Non-metric multidimensional scaling (MDS)was utilized to assess the sampling difference between gear types and revealed that the communities of fish sampled by the gears were two distinct groups. Sampling the Albemarle Sound fish community with two gear types allows us to assess gear bias when conducting community analysis, providing better resolution. There were no clear temporal patterns in the community for the trawl data but MDS and cluster analysis did reveal similarities among several years for the seine data (1998, 1990, 2011, 1988, 2003, 1983, 1993, 2000, and 2004).