Guest Expert: Ms. Melissa Yencho
Ms. Melissa Yencho, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Date of Webinar: December 9, 2010, 8:00pm EST
Title: But We Don’t Eat Baby Fish! Why Studying the Little Guys is Still Important: The First Chapter in the Story of the Year Winter Flounder on Long Island
Presentation Description: Winter flounder (Pseudopleuronectes americanus Walbaum) are both a commercially and recreationally important species along the eastern seaboard. However, there has been a precipitous decline in abundance during the last decade. This trend has been mirrored in Long Island, NY where historically this species has been important to the economy in various ways. However, some of the aspects of this fish’s life history are not completely understood and that’s what my lab group and I worked on while I was in graduate school. My presentation will focus on why young fish are important even though we don’t eat them, how math is more than problems in a book (and <gasp> interesting), fisheries technology (even low-tech technology) and how all of this relates to the human species. We will go over some methods for estimating age, growth, mortality and abundance, some basics of fisheries science and methodology as well as discuss how this relates to us.
Guest Expert Bio: When I was five years old, my parents and I watched the movie Jaws and I was “hooked” on marine life thereafter. Luckily, my parents nurtured my interest in marine life instead of thinking I had a problem for crying that the shark died. This simple episode of my childhood led me to a course of study that has challenged me and offered me some of the most rewarding experiences of my life. To increase my knowledge of the sea and its diverse inhabitants, I earned dual degrees in Marine Science and Biology with a minor in Chemistry from Coastal Carolina University. There I conducted research on eutrophication in coastal environments, molecular biology of seaside sparrows and shark physiology. Most recently I studied population dynamics and life history of young of the year winter flounder in two habitats on Long Island for my Master’s degree in Marine Science from the School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences at Stony Brook University. I have also completed study abroad programs on the ecology of east Africa and the physiology of marine organisms in France. Currently, I am a contractor with the National Marine Fisheries Service serving as a member of the Commercial Statistics team in the Office of Science and Technology and I still get sad when Jaws dies.
Melissa Yencho’s Presentation:
- The First Chapter in the Story of the Year Winter Flounder on Long Island (PDF ~6MB)
- Version 2 (no pop-up boxes): The First Chapter in the Story of the Year Winter Flounder on Long Island (PDF ~11MB)
- Follow Up Questions and Answers
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Additional Resources on Fisheries:
- Estimating the Abundance of Egg Production of Spawning Winter Flounder: Danila
- Predator Prey Relations: Manderson et al
- Winter Flounder Reproductive Success: Buckley et al
- Manual on Fish Tagging
- Habitat Quality: Effects of Man-made Structures: Able et al
- Effects of Hypoxia on Growth: Stierhoff et al
- Habitat Related Differences in Growth Rates: Phelan et al
- Detection of Flounder in Crustacean Stomach Contents: Taylor
- Critical Periods in Larval Flounder: Chambers et al
- Stock, Recruitment and Moderating Processes in Flatfish: Beverton
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