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Changes in size-at-age of Pacific halibut (Hippoglossus stenolopis) and its relation to diet composition in the Cook Inlet, Alaska.

Removing the right sagittal otolith from a Pacific halibut for aging, photo by Carol Gering, University of Alaska

Removing the right sagittal otolith from a Pacific halibut for aging, photo by Carol Gering, University of Alaska

Since the late 1970s halibut growth rates have decreased in the Gulf of Alaska.  The primary goal of this study is to determine if the trend in decreased growth rates is continuing in the Homer area of the Cook Inlet.  The reason for this decrease is presently unknown, though may be correlated to changes in abundance, climate, or diet.  This study will attempt to correlate the growth rate with diet.  Finally, there has been a recent epizootic of “Mushy Flesh Syndrome,” a syndrome characterized by degeneration of muscle tissue; we will attempt to correlate this with diet and growth rate.

Willie Dunn from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game measures the fork length of a Pacific halibut in Deep Creek, Alaska

Willie Dunn from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game measures the fork length of a Pacific halibut in Deep Creek, Alaska

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sarah Webster: Out catching dinner in Price William Sound

Sarah Webster: Out catching dinner in Price William Sound

Sarah Webster: I am originally from Shelburne, Vermont. I graduated from Colby College in Maine in 2005 with a BA in Biology. Since then I have taught environmental education throughout the US, worked for the World Conservation Union in Vietnam, and worked with Sea Turtles in Costa Rica. My primary interest is in using science to make sound management decisions.

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