Presentation Title

Changes in Spawning Events of the California Grunion, Leuresthes tenuis, in Los Angeles County

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Keywords

Grunion, Spawning, Biology, Beaches, Fish, Human Impact, California

Department

Biology

Major

Biology

Abstract

The California Grunion, Leuresthes tenuis, is a beach spawning fish endemic to Southern California and Northern Baja California. The fish come fully out of water to deposit and fertilize their eggs on beaches during the new and full moon nights February through August. The amount of fish participating in a single mating event on a beach are quantified by a group of citizen scientists called the Grunion Greeters using the Walker Scale, a 0-5 scale that estimates the amount of fish spawning. Pressures from increasing human population and climate change may influence the spawning runs of the California Grunion. Previous study has suggested that human activity may have a negative effect on the size of spawning events. This study focuses on the spawning runs in Los Angeles County to understand how Grunion runs have changed in frequency and size over the last eleven years. Grunion runs occur at the same time on every beach, therefore this data set is necessarily incomplete, however it is the best data available and our best representation of the spawning activity. We hope that this data will stress the importance of conservation and protection of the California Grunion in this time of expansive population growth as well as climate change. By visualizing the changes in Grunion run size over the last eleven years, we also hope to understand more about the California Grunion population.

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Karen Martin

Funding Source or Research Program

Summer Undergraduate Research in Biology

Presentation Session

Session C

Location

Plaza Classroom 190

Start Date

1-4-2016 4:45 PM

End Date

1-4-2016 5:00 PM

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Apr 1st, 4:45 PM Apr 1st, 5:00 PM

Changes in Spawning Events of the California Grunion, Leuresthes tenuis, in Los Angeles County

Plaza Classroom 190

The California Grunion, Leuresthes tenuis, is a beach spawning fish endemic to Southern California and Northern Baja California. The fish come fully out of water to deposit and fertilize their eggs on beaches during the new and full moon nights February through August. The amount of fish participating in a single mating event on a beach are quantified by a group of citizen scientists called the Grunion Greeters using the Walker Scale, a 0-5 scale that estimates the amount of fish spawning. Pressures from increasing human population and climate change may influence the spawning runs of the California Grunion. Previous study has suggested that human activity may have a negative effect on the size of spawning events. This study focuses on the spawning runs in Los Angeles County to understand how Grunion runs have changed in frequency and size over the last eleven years. Grunion runs occur at the same time on every beach, therefore this data set is necessarily incomplete, however it is the best data available and our best representation of the spawning activity. We hope that this data will stress the importance of conservation and protection of the California Grunion in this time of expansive population growth as well as climate change. By visualizing the changes in Grunion run size over the last eleven years, we also hope to understand more about the California Grunion population.