Not since F. R. Harden Jones published his masterwork on fish migration in 1968 has a book so thoroughly demystified the subject. With stunning clarity, David Hallock Secor's Migration Ecology of Marine Fishes finally penetrates the clandestine nature of marine fish migration.
Secor explains how the four decades of research since Jones' classic have employed digital-age technologies – including electronic miniaturization, computing, microchemistry, ocean observing systems, and telecommunications – that render overt the previously hidden migration behaviors of fish. Emerging from the millions of observed, telemetered, simulated, and chemically traced movement paths is an appreciation of the individual fish. Members of the same populations may stay put, explore, delay, accelerate, evacuate, and change course as they conditionally respond to their marine existence. But rather than a morass of individual behaviors, Secor shows us that populations are collectively organized through partial migration, which causes groups of individuals to embark on very different migration pathways despite being members of the same population.
Case studies throughout Migration Ecology of Marine Fishes emphasize how migration ecology confounds current fisheries management. Yet, as Secor explains, conservation frameworks that explicitly consider the influence of migration on yield, stability, and resilience outcomes have the potential to transform fisheries management. A synthetic treatment of all marine fish taxa (teleosts and elasmobranchs), Migration Ecology of Marine Fishes employs explanatory frameworks from avian and systems ecology while arguing that migrations are emergent phenomena, structured through schooling, phenotypic plasticity, and other collective agencies.
Migration Ecology of Marine Fishes provides overviews of the following concepts: the comparative movement ecology of fishes and birds; the alignment of mating systems with larval dispersal; schooling and migration as adaptations to marine food webs; Natal homing; connectivity in populations and metapopulations; and, the contribution of migration ecology to population resilience.
David H. Secor is a regents professor at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science. In addition to serving as an adviser for the Chesapeake Bay Program, the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, the Mid-Atlantic Fisheries Management Council, and the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tuna, he is an editor of the ICES Journal of Marine Science.
"Secor, in this tour de force synthesis on marine fish migrations, brings together the literature on the history of ideas across a broad disciplinary suite, as well as on the new technologies that have provided remarkable observations on movements of fish in the global oceans. The breadth of coverage enables a nuanced and complex causal framework; which addresses why fish go where they do, and why an understanding of the mechanisms is critical to the management of ocean uses. Migration Ecology of Marine Fishes is an essential read for ecologists of all specialties. It will sit comfortably beside Harden Jones' Fish Migration."
– Michael Sinclair, author of Marine Populations: An Essay on Population Regulation and Speciation
"This book is far more than a review of fish migration. Secor contemplates 'migration' as a complex system of adaptation, woven from the warp of recent theories, models, and hypotheses in various disciplines of ecology, behavior, ichthyology, oceanography, and fisheries science."
– Katsumi Tsukamoto, Nihon University
"This perceptive book updates and enhances Harden Jones' pioneering concepts on fish migration."
– Tony J. Pitcher, University of British Columbia