Study of the Long-line Fishery of Coastal Sharks Occurring in State Waters
The study will conduct field samples and tag sharks on coastal beaches and inlets between Port Royal Sound and Little River Inlet SC. A total of six sites will be visited at intervals of once a month beginning May 15, 2007 and occurring through Sept. 15, 2007, and will provide a total of twenty-four trips for the study period. The sampling will involve two crew working two bottom set long-lines consisting of one hundred hooks total from a private skiff. The gear will be actively fished meaning it will not be left unattended allowing catch to be green or healthy when landed and a viable candidate for the tagging and release of select fish.
The gear will consist of two simple bottom long-lines constructed of monofilament approximately 2000 feet in length, employing fifty hooks each. Staging or rigged lines will be of same material and connected to the mainline via a commercial snap. Most fishing will occur during times of a morning tide. Every effort will be made to keep fishing times and locations consistent through-out the project.
Information gathered during trips will be logged on site using a log format provided by SCDNR Marine Resources Research Institute and will provide department biologist with the specific data that the Department desires. Once ashore logged data will be compiled in study journal and used to create an overview for a formal report. Additionally data logs will be available to SCDNR biologist as needed or determined necessary by the Department.
In addition select species of large coastal sharks will be tagged at the Department’s discretion. At Marine Resources Research's advisement, total tagging goal of the project entirety will be reduced from a previous goal of five- hundred individuals taken at random, to a current goal of One -Hundred select large coastal sharks determined as priority individuals by the Department.
In an effort to compliment and assist an ongoing research project conducted by MRRI, select individuals will be retained and delivered to SCDNR biologists for research concerning reproduction and age growth of two high priority species the Bonnethead and Blacknose sharks, as well as other individual species as the department may require during the project.
Individuals captured during the project that are not retained or tagged for research, will at the captain's discretion be released alive or brought to market.
Data collected upon capture to include:
- Numbers and sexes of each species captured
- Lengths of each individual captured
- Physical condition of each individual at time of capture
- Numbers of pregnant female
- Catch rates to hook effort
- Weight, Log weight, Fin weight