Molokini Apex Predator Project

EXAMINATION OF THE MOVEMENT PATTERNS OF IMPORTANT RESOURCE FISHES IN THE MOLOKINI MARINE LIFE CONSERVATION DISTRICT


Alex Filous and Alan Friedlander


Background

In the Molokini Shoal Marine Life Conservation District (MLCD), the University of Hawaii and the State of Hawaii’s Division of Aquatic Resources (DAR) initiated a collaborative research project that aims to investigate the movements of apex predators using acoustic telemetry. Specifically the giant trevally, the bluefin trevally, and the white tip reef shark.

Acoustic receiver array in the Molokini MLCD. Subzone A is demarcated with blue lines.

Acoustic receiver array in the Molokini MLCD. Subzone A is demarcated with blue lines.

This project is part of Molokini’s Conservation Action Plan (CAP). To date, the project has improved our understanding of apex predator movements in the MLCD. The information provided by this study is critically important to inform management and promote conservation of this unique ecosystem.

TaggedShark

White tip reef shark with tag visible on left side of dorsal fin.


Preliminary data (February 2014) show:

  • 23,493 detections from the acoustic tagged apex predators in the MLCD
  • All 23 fish that have been tagged as part of this study are alive and transmitting data.
  • The array has also recorded the movements of 10 tiger sharks in the MLCD that were tagged as part of the State sponsored tiger shark research on the Island of Maui.
UH and DAR staff tagging an Ulua.

UH and DAR staff tagging an Ulua.

 

For more information please contact Alex Filous: afilous@hawaii.edu

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s