SS1.10 Marine Protected Areas: Critical tools for Marine Biodiversity Conservation
Date: Monday, June 10, 2002
Time: 11:30:00 AM
Location: Esquimalt
 
TrimbleAC, University of Washington, Seattle, USA, trimblea@u.washington.edu
 
TIDAL TRANSPORT INFLUENCE ON MARINE PROTECTED AREA NETWORKS IN THE SAN JUAN ISLANDS
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To date over 100 MPAs exist in Puget Sound. However, no framework exists to help assess which areas or sets of areas best contribute to persistence and recovery of managed species. This study utilizes simulations of Lagrangian drifters in the San Juan Islands region to determine the effects of tidal currents on connectivity in the San Juan County Bottomfish Recovery Program MPA network. A three-dimensional, barotropic, finite element model (Foreman, M.G.G. 1995) of the Juan de Fuca Stait and southern Strait of Georgia was used to calculate tidal flows for a three month period. A single simulated drifter was started every hour for thirty days at the location of each of the eight no-take sites in the network (5760 drifters.) The drifters were tracked for 96 hours or until they contacted a land boundary. Although net displacements were often large, drifter trajectories and locations of track endpoints reveal that tidal forcing alone is insufficient to provide connectivity between all sites. Therefore other forms of physical forcing or active organismal behavior may be required for the creation and maintenance of metapopulations.