A general approach to incorporating spatial and temporal variation in individual-based models of fish populations with application to Atlantic mackerel

Boyd, Robin, Roy, Shovonlal, Sibly, Richard, Thorpe, Robert and Hyder, Kieran ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1428-5679 (2018) A general approach to incorporating spatial and temporal variation in individual-based models of fish populations with application to Atlantic mackerel. Ecological Modelling, 382. pp. 9-17. ISSN 0304-3800

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Fish population dynamics are affected by multiple ecosystem drivers, such as food-web interactions, exploitation, density-dependence and the wider environment. While tactical management is still dominated by single-species models that do not explicitly account for these drivers, more holistic ecosystem models are used in strategic management. One way forward in this regard is with individual-based models (IBMs), which provide a single framework in which these drivers can be represented explicitly. We present a generic marine fish IBM that incorporates spatial and temporal variation in food availability, temperature and exploitation. Key features of the model are that it (1) includes realistic energy budgets; (2) includes the full life cycle of fish; (3) is spatially-explicit and (4) incorporates satellite remote-sensing data to represent the environmental drivers. The rates at which individuals acquire and use energy depend on local food availability and temperature. Their state variables, including life stage, size and energy reserves, are updated daily, from which population structure and dynamics emerge. To demonstrate the use of the model we calibrate it for mackerel (Scomber scombrus) in the North East Atlantic. Most parameters are taken from the literature, except the background early mortality rate and the strength predator density dependence, which were estimated by fitting the model to data using Approximate Bayesian Computation. The calibrated model successfully matches the available data on mackerel population dynamics and structure. We demonstrate the use of the model for management purposes by simulating the population effects of opening and closing a sector of the North Sea to mackerel fishing. Our model uses basic principles of behavioural and physiological ecology to establish how spatial and temporal variations in ecosystem drivers affect the individuals in the population. Population dynamics and structure are calculated from the collective effects on individuals. Application to a test case shows the method can fit available data well. Individual-based approaches such as this study have potential for use in strategic management because they can account for spatial structuring, food-web interactions, density dependence, and environmental drivers within a single framework.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Funding Information: We would like to thank Elske van der Vaart for her help with the ABC analysis, Piera Carpi for her advice on possible management scenarios, Steve Mackinson for general advice on mackerel, Vicky Boult for reviewing the model code and two anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments on the manuscript. We also acknowledge NASA’s Ocean Biology Processing Group for providing the satellite remote sensing data, and the National Oceanographic Data Centre for providing the bathymetric data. This work was supported by a NERC PhD studentship [grant number NE/L002566/1 ] with CASE sponsorship from CEFAS. Publisher Copyright: © 2018
Uncontrolled Keywords: atlantic mackerel,bioenergetics,energy-budget,individual-based model,spatially-explicit,ecological modelling,sdg 14 - life below water ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2300/2302
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Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 25 Nov 2023 03:22
Last Modified: 26 Jan 2024 02:14
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/93802
DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2018.04.015

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