Questionnaire Report for Speckled hind

(MERA version 4.1.6)

Brett van Poorten ()


1 About this document

This is a prototype of an automatic report that documents how the user specified the operating model and their various justifications.

2 Introduction

  1. Describe the history and current status of the fishery, including fleets, sectors, vessel types and practices/gear by vessel type, landing ports, economics/markets, whether targeted/bycatch, other stocks caught in the fishery. “The Reef Fish Fishery Management Plan was implemented in November 1984. The regulations, designed to rebuild declining reef fish stocks, included: (1) prohibitions on the use of fish traps, roller trawls, and powerhead-equipped spear guns within an inshore stressed area; and, (2) data reporting requirements.” (SEDAR 49) The fishery includes catch from the vertical line, long line, trap, headboat and recreational fisheries. Speckled Hind are captured in a general reef fishery; their bycatch in the shrimp fishery is negligible.

  2. Describe the stock’s ecosystem functions, dependencies, and habitat types. “Speckled hind inhabit warm, moderately deep waters from North Carolina to Cuba, including Bermuda, the Bahamas and the Gulf of Mexico. Preferred habitats include high- and low-profile hard bottoms in depths of 25 to 183 meters, with temperatures of 60° to 85°F. They are most common between 60 and 120 meters. Off the Carolinas, the speckled hind is usually found inshore of deep-water reef fish (tilefish, snowy, warsaw and yellowedge groupers). Like other reef fish studied in the South Atlantic Bight, speckled hind seem to display a fish size-water depth relationship, smaller fish occur inshore, where larger fish are found in deeper waters. The world record is a 64-pound speckled hind, caught off North Carolina. They are protogynous hermaphrodites, with females reaching sexual maturity at 4 or 5 years of age (about 19-21 inches long). Spawning takes place offshore in July through September. Speckled hind generally engulf their prey whole. Their life span is approximately 25 years.” (

  3. Provide all relevant reference materials, such as assessments, research, and other analysis. SEDAR 49

3 Fishery Characteristics

3.1 Longevity

Very short-lived (5 < maximum age < 7)
Short-lived (7 < maximum age < 10)
Moderate life span (10 < maximum age < 20)
Moderately long-lived (20 < maximum age < 40)
Long-lived (40 < maximum age < 80)
Very long-lived (80 < maximum age < 160)
Maximum observed age reported in Ziskin et al. (2011) is 35 y.

3.2 Stock depletion

Crashed (D < 0.05)
Very depleted (0.05 < D < 0.1)
Depleted (0.1 < D < 0.15)
Moderately depleted (0.15 < D < 0.3)
Healthy (0.3 < D < 0.5)
Underexploited (0.5 < D)
No information on stock depletion is available.

3.3 Resilence

Not resilient (steepness < 0.3)
Low resilience (0.3 < steepness < 0.5)
Moderate resilence (0.5 < steepness < 0.7)
Resilient (0.7 < steepness < 0.9)
Very Resilient (0.9 < steepness)
Meta analysis by Shertzer and Conn (2012) suggests a steepness of 0.84.

3.4 Historical effort pattern

Gradual increases
Stable, recent increases
Stable, recent declines
The commercial bottom longline fishery has been used as the representative fishing effort index (Table 6.3.6 in SEDAR 49 or Speckled Hind Catch.xlsx).

3.5 Inter-annual variability in historical effort

Not variable (less than 20% inter-annual change (IAC))
Variable (maximum IAC between 20% to 50%)
Highly variable (maximum IAC between 50% and 100%)
Historical effort only goes back to 1997. There are essentially two periods of effort: 1997-2008 and 2009-2013. CV in first period is 0.12; in second period is 0.31. (see Speckled Hind catch.xlsx)