A systematic pot survey in Glacier Bay, Alaska, was conducted to characterize the spatial distribution of juvenile and adult female Tanner crabs, and their association with depth and temperature. The information was used to infer important recruitment processes for Tanner crabs in glaciated ecosystems. High-catch areas for juvenile and adult female Tanner crabs were identified using local autocorrelation statistics. Spatial segregation by size class corresponded to features in the glacial landscape: high-catch areas for juveniles were located at the distal ends of two narrow glacial fjords, and high-catch areas for adults were located in the open waters of the central Bay. Juvenile female Tanner crabs were found at nearly all sampled depths (15-439 m) and temperatures (4-8??C), but the biggest catches were at depths <150 m where adults were scarce. Because adults may prey on or compete with juveniles, the distribution of juveniles could be influenced by the distribution of adults. Areas where adults or predators are scarce, such as glacially influenced fjords, could serve as refuges for juvenile Tanner crabs. ?? 2007 International Council for the Exploration of the Sea. Published by Oxford Journals. All rights reserved.
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Spatial distribution of juvenile and adult female Tanner crabs (Chionoecetes bairdi) in a glacial fjord ecosystem: Implications for recruitment processes