A novel fish sampling system for ROVs.

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Publisher: Elsevier B.V.
Document Type: Report; Brief article
Length: 391 words

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Abstract :

Keywords Mesophotic reef; Fish sampling; Solomon Islands; Inspection-class ROV Highlights * Field tested mesophotic fish sampling system for inspection-class ROVs. * Collected multiple new mesophotic reef specimens in Solomon Islands. * Compact, low cost, low power, targeted piscicide dispensing sampler. Abstract Mesophotic coral reefs (~30--150 m) and deeper reefs ( 150 m) represent some of the least explored and poorly documented habitats in our oceans. These deep ecosystems are both high in biodiversity and ecologically distinct from shallower reefs. They are also equally threatened by natural and anthropogenic factors. Thanks to advancements in remote undersea technologies, our access to and understanding of these poorly studied environments continues to expand. With current data now suggesting more stratified populations of reef fishes and a continuous yield of new species discovered in the mesophotic zone, now under global pressures of climate change and overfishing, the need to explore these ecosystems has never been greater. Most deep-sea ( 200 m) biodiversity studies rely on dredging and trawling technologies that are not selective or targeted. Here we present on the design and field demonstration of a compact, low-cost, targeted reef fish sampling system intended for use on inspection-class ROVs in the mesophotic zone. During a research expedition to the Western Province of the Solomon Islands, the system successfully collected multiple novel fish species at depths ranging from 90 to 187 m. The results obtained during this expedition highlight the utility of ROV-based collecting systems, add to the growing knowledge of mesophotic reef communities, and inspire new techniques for sampling mobile faunas at depth. Author Affiliation: (a) Department of Ocean Engineering, University of Rhode Island, 215 South Ferry Road, Narragansett, RI 02882, USA (b) Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island, Narragansett, RI, USA (c) Department of Natural Sciences, Baruch College, City University of New York, 17 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10010, USA (d) Division of Science and Resource Management, Grand Canyon National Park, National Park Service, 1824 S. Thompson Street, Flagstaff, AZ 86001, USA (e) Department of Ichthyology, Division of Vertebrate Zoology, American Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at 79th Street, New York, NY 10024, USA * Corresponding author. Article History: Received 10 September 2020; Revised 23 October 2020; Accepted 23 October 2020 Byline: Nicholas Chaloux [nchaloux@uri.edu] (a,*), Brennan T. Phillips (a,b), David F. Gruber (c), Robert C. Schelly (d), John S. Sparks (e)

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A648410972