Relative abundance and size distributions of commercially important shrimp during the 1981 Texas closure.
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Relative abundances of commercial shrimp, Penaeus spp., and lengths of brown shrimp, Penaeus aztecus, are determined for Texas shelf waters during the 1981 Texas closure, 22 May-15 July. A total of 274 samples were collected in water where bottom depths ranged from 4 to 45 fathoms in four statistical subareas covering the Texas Gulf coast. Greatest abundances of Penaeus were found between 10 and 20 fathoms in each subarea. Shrimp were more abundant in the southern subareas (20 and 21) than in the northern ones (18 and 19). Relative abundances during the 1981 closure were usually greater than those calculated from the 1961-65 Bureau of Commercial Fisheries' and the 1975-80 Texas Parks and Wildlife Mean total lengths of brown shrimp in waters where bottom depths were from 4 to 10 fathoms were close to 100 mm, those in 11-20 fathoms were closed to 115 mm, and those in 21-30 fathoms were close to 130 mm. When mean total lengths of brown shrimp were compared among the three data sets, means of the 1981 closure surpassed those of the two historical data sets where bottom were 4 to 10 fathoms during June. Closure mean lengths between 11 and 20 fathoms were less than those from Bureau of Commercial Fisheries data and were greater than those from Texas Parks and Wildlife Department data. Closure mean lengths in 21-30 fathoms were smaller than those from both agencies' data.