Ecology and conservation of the American eel in the Caribbean region

Fisheries Management and Ecology
By: , and 



The majority of American eel, Anguilla rostrata LeSueur, knowledge is derived from temperate regions in the United States and Canada, with little known from its tropical Caribbean distribution. Findings of original research on American eel distribution, abundance, population biology, habitat ecology and threats from the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico were synthesised. American eel were captured from 48 of 116 sites (41.4%) in 26 of 49 river basins (53.1%) during 2005–2016, and it was extirpated upstream of dams and migration barriers >3.0 m high (38.9% of habitat). Mean density and biomass were 438.9 fish/ha and 23.44 kg/ha, respectively. Upstream habitats favoured larger individuals, and females were larger than males. The swim‐bladder parasite Anguillicoloides crassus Kuwahara, Niimi & Hagaki was not found in 120 eels examined. Realised threats include dams and other migratory barriers, habitat loss and alteration and pollution; exotic species and commercial fishing are impending threats; and the least understood is climate change.

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Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Ecology and conservation of the American eel in the Caribbean region
Series title Fisheries Management and Ecology
DOI 10.1111/fme.12300
Volume 26
Issue 1
Year Published 2019
Language English
Publisher Wiley
Contributing office(s) Coop Res Unit Atlanta
Description 11 p.
First page 42
Last page 52
Other Geospatial Caribbean region
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