Capstone Title

The Potential Use of Artificial Reefs Within Marine Protected Areas to Enhance Fisheries and MPA Effectiveness

Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

M.S. Marine Biology

First Advisor

Paul Arena

Second Advisor

Richard E. Spieler

Third Advisor

Nicholas Funicelli


Numerous experiments have indicated artificial reefs increase fish biomass and species richness. However, the majority of these experiments have determined these increases were primarily the result of attraction of fishes from nearby areas rather than production of new fish biomass. These structures would act more as fishing tools and sinks rather than enhancement materials in areas open to fishing (Claudet 2004 &Lindberg 1997). Incorporating AR’s into MPA’s could increase the effectiveness of the MPA by initially attracting fishes into an area protected from fishing. With fishing restricted on the AR, the goal would be to eventually increase biomass and species richness within the boundaries of the MPA’s.

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