Ontogenetic Variation in Movements and Depth Use, and Evidence of Partial Migration in a Benthopelagic Elasmobranch

James Thorburn* (Corresponding Author), Francis Neat, Ian Burrett, Lea-Anne Henry, David M. Bailey, Cath S. Jones, Les R. Noble

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)
1 Downloads (Pure)


Tope (Galeorhinus galeus) is a highly mobile elasmobranch in the temperate to subtropical northeast Atlantic. It is highly migratory and has been shown to display complex movement patterns, such as partial migration, in the southern hemisphere. In the northeast Atlantic, previous mark-recapture studies have struggled to identify movement patterns and the species behavior is poorly described, yet identification of migratory behaviors and habitats of importance for the species is of paramount importance for effective management. Here, we combined fisheries independent survey data with mark-recapture (MR) data to investigate the distribution of different age classes of tope across the northeast Atlantic. We further investigated depth use in detail with archival electronic tags and a pop-up satellite archival tag (PSAT). We suggest previous studies struggling to find consistent movement patterns using MR data were confounded by a combination of site fidelity, partial migration by females, and increasing depth and home range of juveniles. Survey and MR data showed immature tope
Original languageEnglish
Article number353
Number of pages14
JournalFrontiers in Ecology and Evolution
Publication statusPublished - 25 Sep 2019


  • tope
  • school shark
  • depth range
  • archival tags
  • migration
  • site fidelity
  • Site fidelity
  • Migration
  • School shark
  • Tope
  • Depth range
  • Archival tags


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