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Tracking the Giant Sea Bass: Catalina MPA Collaborative/Pennington Marine Science Center

June 1 2018

Follow the Pennington Marine Science Center, a member of the Catalina MPA Collaborative, as we use the Trident ROV to track and identify individual Giant Sea Bass (Stereolepis gigas) that are found within and outside the borders of the Lion Head to Arrow Point Marine Protected Area on Catalina Island located off the coast of Los Angeles

June 1 2018


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Preparation Stage

Hi Everyone!

Our expedition has passed the vetting process and is now live! Thanks to Madeleine at OpenExplorer for her suggestions to help us get this thing going!

Our next step is to get to 50 plus follows as fast as we can! If we're one of the first members of the California MPA Colloborative network to get to 50 follows we'll get a free Trident mini rov for not only our expeditions but the entire Catalina MPA collaborative as well! Please tell your friends and family about our expedition and have them follow us!

Thanks for all of your support!

Expedition Background

The Giant Sea Bass (Stereolepis gigas) is the largest bony fish found in California waters reaching a maximum size of 7 feet and nearly 600 pounds. It is an important apex predator of near shore rocky reefs. From the late 1800's to the 1970's there was a commercial fishery in both California and Mexico. However, the Giant Sea Bass was thought to have been fished to extinction in California by the early 80's in part because of their inclination to group together which made it easy to fish out entire populations. California closed the commercial and recreational fisheries in 1981 but it was years before Giant Sea Bass were seen again. There are now thought to be around 500 individuals in California waters and there is much to learn about their habits and reproductive behaviors.

Our expedition seeks to help shed light on populations of Giant Sea Bass in and around the Lions Head to Arrow Point Marine Protected Area (MPA) on Catalina Island. Through the use of a Remotely Operated Vehicle or ROV we hope to track and identify the suspected 20 plus individuals that live within the MPA and share this information with the public and network of researchers who study this amazing animal. Photo by Shaun Wolfe