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A zone of deep-water reefs is thought to extend from the mid and outer shelf south of Mississippi and Alabama to at least the northwestern Florida shelf off Panama City, Florida (Figure 1). The reefs off Mississippi and Alabama are found in water depths of 60 to 120 m (Ludwick and Walton, 1957; Gardner et al., 2001, in press) and were the focus of a multibeam echosounder (MBES) mapping survey by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in 2000 (Gardner et al., 2000, Gardner et al., 2001, in press). If this deep-water-reef trend does exist along the northwestern Florida shelf, then it is critical to determine the accurate geomorphology and reef type that occur because of their importance as benthic habitats for fisheries....
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Open-File Report
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The hypothesis that phytoplankton is the sole carbon source for the OCS deep-reef community (>60 m) was tested. Trophic structure for NE Gulf of Mexico deep reefs was analyzed via carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes. Carbon signatures for 114 entities (carbon sources, sediment, fishes, and invertebrates) supported surface phytoplankton as the primary fuel for the deep reef. However, a second carbon source, the macroalga Sargassum, with its epiphytic macroalgal associate, Cladophora liniformis, was also identified. Macroalgal carbon signatures were detected among 23 consumer entities. Most notably, macroalgae contributed 45 % of total carbon to the 13C isotopic spectrum of the particulate-feeding reef-crest gorgonian...
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Recent USGS mapping shows an extensive deep (~100 m) reef tract occurs on the Mississippi-Alabama outer continental shelf (Figure 1). The tract, known as "The Pinnacles", is apparently part of a sequence of drowned reef complexes along the "40-fathom" shelf edge of the northern Gulf of Mexico (Ludwick and Walton, 1957). It is critical to determine the accurate geomorphology of these deep-reefs because of their importance as benthic habitats for fisheries. The Pinnacles have previously been mapped using a single-beam echo sounder (Ludwick and Walton,1957), sidescan sonar (Laswell et al., 1990), and the TAMU2 towed single-beam sidescan-sonar system (Anonymous, 1999). These existing studies do not provide the quality...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Open-File Report
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Ecosystem-based management requires sound information on the distribution and abundance of species both common and rare. Therefore, the accurate identification for all marine species has assumed a much greater importance. The identification of many skate species is difficult as several are easily confused and has been found to be problematic in both survey data and fisheries data collection. Identification guides, in combination with training and periodic validation of taxonomic information, improve our accuracy in monitoring data required for ecosystem-based management and monitoring of populations. This guide offers a comparative synthesis of skate species known to occur in Atlantic Canada and adjacent regions....
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
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Sturgeon: An ancient type of fish, with 5 rows of armor scutes, a cartilaginous skeleton, long snout, suction mouth, no teeth, and 4 barbels. Photograph of a Gulf sturgeon. The total length of a 5-month old is 313 mm.
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: General Information Product
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Recent research cruises to deep (80–910 m) reef habitats off the south-eastern U.S. and in the northern Gulf of Mexico have provided new information on the diagnostic characteristics, behaviours, colour patterns in life, bottom associations, distributions and maximum sizes of species of the anglerfish genera Chaunax, Lophiodes and Sladenia. Chaunax stigmaeus occurred much further south than previously known (Blake Plateau off South Carolina), and all C. stigmaeusobserved were found associated with dense beds of dead coral (Lophelia pertusa) rubble or on broken hard bottom. In contrast, Chaunax suttkusi was found on soft bottoms. Chaunax stigmaeusand C. suttkusi appear to be sympatric over a major portion of their...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Journal of Fish Biology
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Stable 13C, 15N, and 34S isotopes were analyzed to define the feeding habitats of Acipenser oxyrinchus desotoi in the Suwannee and Yellow River populations. For the majority (93.9%) of Suwannee subadults and adults, 13C and 34S signatures indicate use of nearshore marine waters as primary winter feeding habitat, probably due to the limiting size of the Suwannee Sound estuary. In the Yellow River population, 13C isotope signatures indicate that adults remain primarily within Pensacola Bay estuary to feed in winter, rather than emigrating to the open Gulf of Mexico. A minor Suwannee River subset (6% of samples), comprised of juveniles and subadults, displayed 13C signatures indicating continued feeding in freshwater...
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The reproductive biology of Cheilopogon melanurus (Valenciennes, 1847) was examined off North Carolina during the summers of 1991–1992 and 1999–2003. Specimens were collected using a small mesh neuston net and dip nets. A spawning event, the first observation of mating behavior for this species, was recorded off Cape Fear, North Carolina, on 19 August 2003. It was considered to be a spawning event due to: 1) unusual coloration of both sexes, 2) unusual swimming behavior of both sexes, and 3) ready release of gametes by both sexes upon capture. The spawning event occurred in the presence of small clumps of floating Sargassum, but the fish did not appear to use the algae. Over all collections, female gonadosomatic...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Bulletin of Marine Science
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This synthesis was undertaken to characterize the occurrence and abundance of fish eggs and larvae in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico (NEGOM) and to assess the region's relative importance in the early life history of fishes as compared to the entire U.S. Gulf of Mexico. Data for 66 selected taxa from 1,166 bongo and neuston net samples at 72 localities [comprising the UGSG NEGOM Ichthyoplankton Synopsis (UNIS) Study Area] were analyzed. These data were taken during annual Southeast Area Monitoring and Assessment Program (SEAMAP) gulfwide surveys from 1982-1999, and were summarized by the NMFS to accomplish this objective. Comparison of the UNIS Study Area with the overall SEAMAP survey area revealed that the larvae...
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Sturgeon and paddlefish were historically the dominant large fishes in all major Northern American Rivers. All ten species have been affected the past 150 years from anthropogenic stressors such that they are considered imperiled by various jurisdictions. Status papers have been presented for each species as part of a special publication on North American Acipenseriformes. The objective of this paper is to provide a summary of the similarities and differences in life history, habitat requirements, and stressors among the species. Optimistically, this would facilitate better management of the order as a whole if management actions for one species can inform another, especially in situations where populations are...
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Submersible observations during four missions over the North Carolina and Virginia continental slopes (184–900 m) documented the occurrence of large aggregations of mesopelagic fishes and macronektonic invertebrates near or on the bottom. Aggregated mesopelagics formed a layer up to tens of meters deep positioned from a few centimeters to 20 m, usually <10 m, above the substrate. Aggregations were numerically dominated by microvores, notably the myctophid fishCeratoscopelus maderensis and the penaeid shrimp Sergestes arcticus. Consistently present but in relatively lower numbers, were mesopelagic predators, including the paralepidids Notolepis rissoiand Lestidium atlanticum, the eel Nemichthys scolopaceus, the stomiid...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Marine Biology
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A zone of deep-water reefs is thought to extend from the mid and outer shelf south of Mississippi and Alabama to at least the northwestern Florida shelf off Panama City, Florida (Figure 1, 67kb). The reefs off Mississippi and Alabama are found in water depths of 60 to 120 m (Ludwick and Walton, 1957; Gardner et al., in press) and were the focus of a multibeam echosounder (MBES) mapping survey by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in 2000 (Gardner et al., 2000; in press). If this deep-water-reef trend does exist along the northwestern Florida shelf, then it is critical to determine the accurate geomorphology and type of the reefs that occur because of their importance as benthic habitats for fisheries. Precisely georeferenced...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: Open-File Report
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This functional bibliography is meant to be a complete and comprehensive bibliography of all discoverable reports containing information on the Gulf Sturgeon (GS). This bibliography contains all known reports presenting, documenting, summarizing, listing, or interpreting information on the GS through 31 December 2013. Report citations are organized into four sections. Section I includes published scientific journal articles, books, dissertations and theses, published and unpublished technical reports, published harvest prohibitions, and online articles reporting substantive scientific information. Section II includes newspaper, newsletter, magazine, book, agency news releases, and online articles reporting on GS...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation
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An experimental release of 1192 hatchery-reared, individually PIT tagged, 220 days old (296–337 mm TL) Gulf sturgeon, Acipenser oxyrinchus desotoi, was undertaken in 1992 in the Suwannee River, Florida. The original objectives of the 1992 release experiment were to: (1) evaluate survival rate of cultured Gulf sturgeon in the wild vs survival rate of their wild 1992 cohort counterparts, (2) determine the differential effect of release site within the river upon long-term survival, and (3) evaluate comparative growth rates of recaptured hatchery vs captured wild 1992 cohort Gulf sturgeon. The present investigation addressed those original objectives, plus an additional fourth objective: (4) evaluation of hatchery...
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Sturgeons and paddlefishes are modern descendants of an ancient group of freshwater fishes, the Chondrostei (a group of bony fishes with mostly cartilaginous skeletons). Sturgeons evolved during the Age of the Dinosaurs, and have prospered in the large rivers and lakes of North America, Europe and Asia for 200 million years. Together with alligators and crocodiles, they survived the mass extinction at the end of the Mesozoic Era, when the dinosaurs and many other groups of animals disappeared forever. They originated prior to the creation of the Atlantic Ocean, when the Northern Hemisphere supercontinent Pangea broke into North America and Eurasia. Most sturgeons are highly specialized to feed in the sediment on...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: General Information Product
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Mid-February in the Gulf of Mexico and a timeless ritual is about to repeat itself for perhaps the millionth time. Some mysterious signal, possibly increasing day length, flips an internal switch, feeding stops, and the homeward migration begins for the Gulf Sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus desotoi). From far flung places along the Gulf Coast, Gulf Sturgeons start heading back to their natal rivers – they know the way instinctively. Maybe they seek out the special chemical taste of their home river, imprinted at hatching. Or perhaps the ultrasensitive electric organs decorating the underside of the snout can follow the map of the earth’s magnetic field. Either way, time to make a beeline for the welcoming waters of...
Categories: Publication; Types: Citation; Tags: American Currents
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Specimens of the four study species were collected during cruises to outer-continental shelf reefs of the northeastern Gulf of Mexico. Age was estimated for all serranid species using whole otoliths and C. enchrysurus ages were determined from transverse sections of sagittal otoliths. Ring structure observed on otoliths was validated as having an annual periodicity for P. martinicensis using marginal increment analysis. Ring structure on remaining species was assumed to correspond to age (years). Pronotogrammus martinicensis, H. vivanus, S. phoebe, and C. enchrysurus exhibited maximum ages of 9, 8, 5, and 11, respectively. Spatial variations in size-at-age were observed in P. martinicensis populations. Individuals...


map background search result map search result map Cruise Report; RV Moana Wave cruise M1-01-GM; the bathymetry and acoustic backscatter of the mid shelf to upper slope off Panama City, Florida, northeastern Gulf of Mexico; September 3, through October 12, 2001, Panama City, FL to Panama City, FL Multibeam mapping of the Pinnacles region, Gulf of Mexico Cruise Report; RV Moana Wave cruise M1-01-GM; the bathymetry and acoustic backscatter of the mid shelf to upper slope off Panama City, Florida, northeastern Gulf of Mexico; September 3, through October 12, 2001, Panama City, FL to Panama City, FL Multibeam mapping of the Pinnacles region, Gulf of Mexico