African Journal of Marine Science

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Mortality estimates for juvenile dusky sharks carcharhinus Obscurus in South Africa using mark-recapture data

A Govender, L Birnie


A maximum likelihood model is developed, using mark-recapture data, to estimate total and fishing mortality rates for the dusky shark Carcharhinus obscurus in South Africa. The model accounts for tag-shedding, nonreporting
of recaptured tags, the multiple release and single recapture nature of the study and the usage of two different types of tags (sheep-ear and ORI tags). Tag shedding was quantified as tags washed up on beaches and
fouling of tags in protective shark nets, which amounted to 17% of all tags recovered between 1986 and 1993. The ORI tag had a higher tag-shedding rate than the sheep-ear tag. Assuming a 75% reporting rate for recaptured
dusky sharks, an instantaneous fishing mortality rate was estimated to be 0.27.year–1, with a 95% confidence level ranging between 0.19 and 0.44.year–1.

AJOL African Journals Online