Comprehensive Estuarine Fish Inventory Program : Great Bay Mullica River: Research Project Summary



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Trenton, N.J. : Department of Environmental Protection, Division of Science and Research


Estuaries are important spawning, nursery, and harvest areas for fish and invertebrates of recreational, commercial, and ecological importance along coastal New Jersey. Data about these systems is in increasing demand by many segments of the public. Resource managers, as well as recreational and commercial fishermen at all levels, are beginning to play a larger advisory role where fish habitats and fish survival are concerned. Fish constitute one of the largest portions of animal biomass and thus they are important to estuarine ecosystems. Data were collected between 2016 and 2018 to determine the spawning and nursery areas of fishes and crabs with emphasis on those of commercial, recreational, and ecological importance in the Mullica River – Great Bay estuary. The researchers evaluated how changes in water quality and habitat contribute to the distribution and abundance of fishes, as well as ecologically important invertebrates such as crabs and jellyfishes. The variation in habitat use of fishes and crabs were noted across life history stages with focus on larvae, juveniles, and adults using a variety of gear types.



New Jersey, Bays - New Jersey, New Jersey - Mullica River, Estuarine fishes - New Jersey