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The survival of discarded Sepia officinalis in the English Channel
journal contributionposted on 06.12.2017, 00:00 authored by A Revill, I Bloor, Emma JacksonEmma Jackson
Cuttleﬁsh are currently the highest yielding cephalopod group harvested in the north-east Atlantic. English Channel cuttleﬁsh show seasonal migrations to and from deep offshore wintering grounds, which results in a large number of smaller cuttleﬁsh within the offshore stocks, some of which are caught by trawlers. Discarding small cuttleﬁsh from trawls may give them the opportunity to migrate inshore and spawn, but only if they survive. This study examined survival rates of small (<15-cm dorsal mantle length) cuttleﬁsh caught on board a commercial beam trawler. Overall, 31% of the small cuttleﬁsh caught remained alive by the time they reached the sorting table (immediate survival rate). This survival rate dropped to 16% after specimens were subsequently held in an on-board aquarium system for up to 72 h (short-term survival rate). Measures that reduce the capture of small cuttleﬁsh in the ﬁrst place and/or increase their survival could potentially beneﬁt the stocks.