Brendon completes Toothfish PhD

May 23, 2022

Brendon Lee has recently completed his PhD and CFL is proud to have been a part of his journey which brings an enhanced understanding of the stock structure of Patagonian toothfish.

He said he was extremely thankful for the collaborative and financial support for this research received from Consolidated Fisheries Ltd; “including their coverage of my PhD fees at Rhodes University for the full extent of my tenure”.

Fisheries assessments are based on the assumption that stocks are self-sustaining productive units. The identification of stocks and the dynamics of linkages among them are therefore fundamental for their effective management.

Brendon said that the aims of my PhD were to provide an improved understanding of the complex stock structure dynamics for Patagonian toothfish on the Patagonian Shelf, specifically in relation to the shelf, slope, and deep-sea plains around the Falkland Islands.

He explained that to achieve this, an integrated approach was used whereby a range of complementary methods were incorporated, “ to improve our understanding of life-history stages identified as potential pathways of population connectivity”.

Research results were focused on aspects pertaining to:

(1) The extent of population mixing of geographically discrete post-mature adults through an analysis of geographic variation in phenotypic characters (otolith shape);

(2) A description of the spatial-temporal distribution patterns to identify nursery areas and track early developmental migrations;

(3) To monitor and describe the active movements of deep-sea adults through the analysis of data achieved from a tag-recapture programme; and

(4) the identification of larval and early life-history dispersal through otolith microstructure and microchemical chronologies.

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