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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2022

Diving into the vertical dimension of elasmobranch movement ecology

Andrzejaczek, Samantha; Lucas, Tim C. D.; Goodman, Maurice C.; Hussey, Nigel E.; Armstrong, Amelia J.; Carlisle, Aaron; Coffey, Daniel M.; Gleiss, Adrian C.; Huveneers, Charlie; Jacoby, David M. P.; Meekan, Mark G.; Mourier, Johann; Peel, Lauren R.; Abrantes, Katya; Afonso, Andre S.; Ajemian, Matthew J.; Anderson, Brooke N.; Anderson, Scot D.; Araujo, Gonzalo; Armstrong, Asia O.;
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Knowledge of the three-dimensional movement patterns of elasmobranchs is vital to understand their ecological roles and exposure to anthropogenic pressures. To date, comparative studies among species at global scales have mostly focused on horizontal movements. Our study addresses the knowledge gap of vertical movements by compiling the first global synthesis of vertical habitat use by elasmobranchs from data obtained by deployment of 989 biotelemetry tags on 38 elasmobranch species. Elasmobranchs displayed high intra- and interspecific variability in vertical movement patterns. Substantial vertical overlap was observed for many epipelagic elasmobranchs, indicating an increased likelihood to display spatial overlap, biologically interact, and share similar risk to anthropogenic threats that vary on a vertical gradient. We highlight the critical next steps toward incorporating vertical movement into global management and monitoring strategies for elasmobranchs, emphasizing the need to address geographic and taxonomic biases in deployments and to concurrently consider both horizontal and vertical movements.

Published in

Science Advances
2022, volume: 8, number: 33, article number: eaho1754

Authors' information

Andrzejaczek, Samantha
Stanford University
Lucas, Tim C. D.
University of Leicester
Goodman, Maurice C.
Stanford University
Hussey, Nigel E.
University of Windsor
Armstrong, Amelia J.
University of Queensland
Carlisle, Aaron
University of Delaware
Gleiss, Adrian C.
Murdoch University
Huveneers, Charlie
Flinders University South Australia
Jacoby, David M. P.
Zoological Society of London
Jacoby, David M. P.
Lancaster University
Meekan, Mark G.
Australian Institute of Marine Science
Mourier, Johann
Macquarie University
Abrantes, Katya
James Cook University
Afonso, Andre S.
Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco (UFRPE)
Afonso, Andre S.
Universidade de Coimbra
Ajemian, Matthew J.
State University System of Florida
Anderson, Brooke N.
Arizona State University
Anderson, Scot D.
Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
Araujo, Gonzalo
Marine Res and Conservat Fdn
Araujo, Gonzalo
Qatar University
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