Shrimp population studies: West Hackberry and Big Hill brine disposal sites off southwest Louisiana and upper Texas coasts, 1980-1982.




Reitsema, L.A.
Gallaway, B.J.
Lewbel, G.S.

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U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administation, Galveston Lab.


The abundance and spawning activity of white and brown shrimp (Penaeus setiferus and Penaeus aztecus) were investigated from September 1980 through September 1981 in an area off the upper Texas and lower Louisiana coasts including the West Hackberry brine disposal site and the proposed Big Hill brine disposal site. White shrimp were found to inhabit a zone from the shoreline to at least 24 km (15 mi) offshore and spawned within this depth zone primarily during June and July. Normal temporal-spatial variance in the distribution of both adults and larval stages within this zone was high, and no effects of brine discharge on white shrimp abundance, distribution or spawning activity were apparent. Brown shrimp spawned well offshore of the disposal sites, primarily during July, August, and September. Brown shrimp larvae, postlarvae, and sub-adults were common in the vicinity of the disposal sites in some months, but their abundance and distribution appeared to be unaffected by brine disposal. This study, in combination with others, indicates that brine disposal offshore Texas and Louisiana has little if any effect on shrimp spawning activity.


82 p.


shrimp fisheries, population dynamics, penaeid shrimp, Penaeus aztecus, penaeus setiferus, brown shrimp, white shrimp, spawning, larvae, juveniles, brines, abundance, distribution, temporal variations, spatial variations