Stacy Beharry

Quantifying the Value of a Nursery Habitat Using the Spotted Seatrout in an Estuarine System

Nursery habitats such as seagrass beds are important for the health and sustainability of many fisheries. In fact, seagrass beds are considered to be essential nursery habitats and as a part of the Sustainable Fisheries Act (SFA) of 1996 it was mandated that these areas be protected. To designate an area as an essential fish habitat two main criteria must be met, 1) greater numbers of fish produced per area and 2) greater survival of juvenile fish to adulthood. In the Chesapeake Bay, seagrass beds are considered to be nursery habitat, but the mortality of juvenile fish on individual beds...