Rock lobster growth rate has increased, research finds

Rock lobster growth rate has increased, research finds

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A recent study has found rock lobsters off the Eyre Peninsula are growing more quickly, as a result of warmer waters due to climate change.

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A recent study has found rock lobsters off the Eyre Peninsula are growing more quickly, as a result of warmer waters due to climate change.

This has resulted in the species' size at maturity no longer matching minimum fishing size limits.

The research, published in PLoS ONE on Monday, found that since 1991, the size at maturity of the species had increased in regions with relatively high rates of increase in sea-surface temperature, and is now bigger than minimum fishing size limits in most cases.

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The research suggested information should be taken into account for future stock assessment models, as size limits are very much dependent on size at maturity, to ensure young females can spawn at least once before being harvested.

In lobster fisheries, minimum legal fishing size limits are routinely set using the average length at which 50 per cent of females are mature.

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