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Monitoring acoustically tagged king prawns Penaeus (Melicertus) plebejus in an estuarine lagoon
Taylor, M.D.; Ko, A. (2011). Monitoring acoustically tagged king prawns Penaeus (Melicertus) plebejus in an estuarine lagoon. Mar. Biol. (Berl.) 158(4): 835-844.
In: Marine Biology. Springer: Heidelberg; Berlin. ISSN 0025-3162, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Taylor, M.D.
  • Ko, A.

    Fine-scale movement patterns in penaeid prawns are rarely observed in situ, but are essential in understanding habitat use, foraging, and anti-predator behaviour. Acoustic telemetry was applied to examine the activity, space utilization, and habitat use of the eastern king prawn Penaeus (Melicertus) plebejus, at small temporal and spatial scales. Tracking of sub-adult P. plebejus (n = 9) in Wallagoot Lake (36.789°S, 149.959°E; 23 April–12 May 2009) and calculation of a minimum activity index (MAI) revealed high variation in activity rates across diel periods and in different habitats. Elevated activity rates and movement indicated foraging in unvegetated habitats during the night. Areas within the 95 and 50% space utilization contours averaged 2,654.1 ± 502.0 and 379.9 ± 103.9 m2, respectively, and there was a significant negative relationship between these areas and prawn activity rates in unvegetated habitats. This study provides the first estimates of prawn activity rates and space utilization in the field. Application of acoustic telemetry can increase knowledge of prawn movements and their interactions with other marine species in different habitats.

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