Young Scientist Webinar Series
The Cape Perpetua Collaborative is hosting a Young Scientist Webinar Series featuring graduate students and postdocs sharing their ocean research. This series will take place October – April on the second Tuesday of the Month at 5:30pm.
March 9 at 5:30pm - Presenting Toby Harbison, Second-year graduate student in the Marine Resource Management program at Oregon State University
During this presentation, Toby Harbison will explore a mystery that has puzzled marine scientists in Oregon. Box core sampling on the seafloor off the Oregon coasts suggests low benthic invertebrate standing stock, which means that at any one moment in time, there are relatively few invertebrates living down on the bottom. These invertebrates are a natural prey source for Dungeness crab. If there is not very much prey for the crabs, then what are they eating? This talk explores the hypothesis that Dungeness crab populations survive by eating bait from the commercial fishery, wild benthic prey, and each other (through cannibalism) at different times of year. Relative seasonal diet composition is assessed using stable isotope and gut content analysis. Crabbers add thousands of pounds of bait to the ocean per year; are they unintentionally farming crabs?