Determination of the population structure and connectivity of the commercially important fish “Lane snapper” (Lutjanus synagris) and “White grunt” (Haemulon plumierii) as a tool for fisheries management in the Honduran Caribbean
AuthorsNuñez-Vallecillo, M; A. Rivera; I. Vera; H. A. Benitez;, K. Górski; A. Brante Download PDF Open PDF in Browser
Artisanal fishing is an important economic activity in the Honduran Caribbean, however scientific information is required to identify the adequate management scale for these fisheries. To identify a suitable management scale, we worked with two commercially important fish species, lane snapper (Lutjanus synagris) and white grunt (Haemulon plumierii), in 4 fishing sites in the Honduran Caribbean. Variations in the body shape of both species were studied through geometric morphometry. These estimates were correlated with environmental variables, to infer the possible cause of the observed variations. In addition, population genetic studies were performed using two mitochondrial (Dloop and ND4) and one nuclear (S7-1) gene. The results of geometric morphometry allowed the identification of populations associated with the environmental conditions of each site. Furthermore, river discharge appears to be the main driving force for the differentiation of body shape for both species. The results of the genetic analysis show a high connectivity and genetic diversity, considering the lane snapper as a single genetic stock and the white grunt with different populations within the area. These results emphasize the need to carry out an integrated coastal marine management at a National level through a marine biological corridor, which can help curb the main threats to marine species such as river discharges.