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Pagrus pagrus 

Scope:Global
Status_ne_offStatus_dd_offStatus_lc_onStatus_nt_offStatus_vu_offStatus_en_offStatus_cr_offStatus_ew_offStatus_ex_off

Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Actinopterygii Perciformes Sparidae

Scientific Name: Pagrus pagrus
Species Authority: (Linnaeus, 1758)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Red Porgy, Couch's Sea-bream, Couch's Sea Bream, Porgy, Common Seabream, Common Sea Bream
French Pagre Commun, Pagre Rouge
Spanish Besugo, Pargo, Pargo-colorado, Sargo Piedra, Sargo Rojo
Synonym(s):
Pagrus sedecim Ginsburg, 1952
Pagrus vulgaris Valenciennes, 1830
Sparus pagrus Linnaeus, 1758
Taxonomic Notes: Genetic studies of Pagrus pagrus have shown Western Atlantic samples to be more closely related to each other than to samples from the Eastern North Atlantic. Within the Western North Atlantic, no significant population differentiation was observed, and within the eastern North Atlantic, only the Azores sample showed detectable differences from those from Crete and Madeira. These data indicate general homogeneity within large areas, and deep divisions between these areas (Ball et al. 2007).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2014
Date Assessed: 2009-08-17
Assessor(s): Russell, B., Pollard, D., Carpenter, K.E. & Vega-Cendejas, M.
Reviewer(s): Sedberry, G.
Contributor(s): Comeros-Raynal, M.
Justification:
Global

Pagrus pagrus
is widely distributed in warm coastal waters of the Western and Eastern Atlantic in depths down to 250 m. The Red Porgy is commonly found over irregular and low-profile hard bottoms and is associated with rock, rubble or sand substrataover the continental shelf. Red Porgy prefer live bottom habitat and adults exhibit considerable site fidelity, so once recruited to a given patch of habitat, this species is exposed to a unique suite of factors which could affect growth, mortality, and reproduction. Pagrus pagrus is an important component of commercial and recreational fisheries in many parts of its range, particularly in the Southeast Atlantic coast of the United States, Argentina, and the Mediterranean. There have been substantial population declines in the United States which have led to a number of management measures, including stock rebuilding efforts. In the southeastern United States, where the Red Porgy has been closely monitored since the 1980s, current stock assessment indicates that the stock is overfished, but is no longer undergoing overfishing. Because it is widespread, apparently well-regulated in parts of its range where significant population declines have been recorded, and is present in marine protected areas in parts of its distributional range, Pagrus pagrus is currently not at a high risk of extinction in the near future and is therefore listed globally as Least Concern. However, population trends need to be re-evaluated given the economic importance of Red Porgy and the complex biological and ecological requirements exhibited by this species. 

Europe 

In the northeastern Atlantic, Pagrus pagrus is typically common, and landing statistics suggest stable population. However, there are some indications of localized overfishing. It is listed regional as Least Concern, with a recommendation of improved and targeted fisheries regulations and protection for this species. 

Gulf of Mexico


The Red Porgy is widely distributed in the Gulf of Mexico where it is very abundant and only light exploited, often taken as bycatch by fishermen targeting more desirable reef fishes. There are no indications of population declines in the region, although it is recommended that further research is conducted to examine the complex population structure observed in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico, to better address the small scale differences in the populations' response to exploitation. It is listed regionally as Least Concern.
Previously published Red List assessments:
  • 1996 – Endangered (EN)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Pagrus pagrus is widely distributed in the Western Atlantic from the United States to Argentina, including the Gulf of Mexico but not the eastern Caribbean Sea. It is present in the eastern Atlantic from the English Channel to Western Sahara, including Madeira and the Canary Islands (Ball et al. 2007). It is present throughout the Mediterranean Sea and the Sea of Marmara, but not in the Black Sea.

The depth range is zero to 250 m and it is commonly found in 10-80 m depth (Carpenter 2002).
Countries occurrence:
Native:
Albania; Algeria; Argentina; Aruba; Belize; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Brazil; Colombia; Costa Rica; Croatia; Cyprus; Egypt; France; French Guiana; Gibraltar; Greece; Guatemala; Guyana; Honduras; Israel; Italy; Lebanon; Libya; Malta; Mexico; Monaco; Montenegro; Morocco; Nicaragua; Panama; Slovenia; Spain; Suriname; Syrian Arab Republic; Trinidad and Tobago; Tunisia; Turkey; United Kingdom; United States; Uruguay; Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Atlantic – western central; Atlantic – northeast; Atlantic – northwest; Atlantic – southwest; Atlantic – eastern central; Mediterranean and Black Sea
Additional data:
Lower depth limit (metres):250
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Pagrus pagrus is an important component of commercial and recreational fisheries in many parts of its range, particularly in the Southeast Atlantic coast of the United States, Argentina, and the Mediterranean. There have been substantial population declines in the United States which have led to a number of management measures, including stock rebuilding efforts. The most common commercial gear has been hook and line, with historical commercial landings also from trawls and traps (now banned in the fishery). The average global capture from 1950-2011 of the Red Porgy reported to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) indicate that the Southwest Atlantic contributed the highest percentage of global landings, comprising 58% of global production over 61 years. The Southwest Atlantic landings are mainly driven by catches reported from Argentina (contributing 84% of the landings in the FAO fishing region). The Southwest Atlantic is then followed by the Mediterranean and Black Sea, comprising 29% of the global production. The total global capture reported from all FAO fishing areas was 420,160 metric tons (1950-2011). There is a general increasing trend in global landings for the Red Porgy reported from 1950-2011; peak in landings were recorded in the early 1980s with subsequent declines in 1990s-2000s; a peak in 2009 at 15,455 metric tons (driven mostly from landings reported from Argentina) was recorded, representing a 13% difference from the maximum catch in 1981. 

Despite the long-held notion that protogynous species are more vulnerable to exploitation than gonochorists, there was no evidence found for the northeast Gulf of Mexico, that this reproductive attribute in the Red Porgy partly led to the apparent crash of the stock in the South Atlantic Bight (DeVries 2005). In fact, Pagrus pagrus may be more resilient to exploitation in some cases given these aspects of its biology and behaviour: widespread spawning grounds (Manooch 1976, DeVries 2005), no tendency to form large, predictable spawning aggregations (DeVries 2005, Harris and McGovern 1997), absence of behaviourally-related size or sex selectivity, socially controlled sex change, co-occurrence of sexes year-round, and an extended period of transition (from ages two to nine years) (Roumillat and Waltz 1993, Cotrina and Christiansen 1994, Pajuelo and Lorenzo 1996, Costa et al. 1997, Cotrina and Raimondo 1997, Kokokiris et al. 1999, Hood and Johnson 2000, DeVries 2005). These reproductive attributes should stabilize or enable rapid compensation of sex ratios (preventing sperm limitation or disruption of mating). Socially controlled sex change should also enable size and age of transition to slide downward as fishing truncates the size structure, similar to the declines in size and age at maturity seen in many gonochorists (DeVries 2005). 

Landings by region

Southeast United States


The 2012 stock assessment of this species for the Southeast United States indicated that rebuilding is not occurring as expected due to poor recruitment, and that the stock is currently not predicted to completely rebuild by 2018 (Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR), accessed 10 March 2014).  Red Porgy is in an 18-year rebuilding plan that was established in 1999 though Amendment 12 to the Snapper Grouper FMP (South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, Decision Document, accessed 10 March 2014). 

Total landings from the three major fisheries operating in the Southeastern United States (commercial, recreational, and head-boat fisheries)  increased during the 1970s and early 1980s as the commercial fishery expanded, with a peak of about 335 mt in 1972 to over 900 mt in 1982. Landings decreased steadily from the peak in 1982, except for a brief spike in 1988-1990,  a peak of under 30 mt was recorded in 2000 (Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR), accessed 10 March 2014). Results from the most recent stock assessment undertaken in 2012 suggest that the spawning stock biomass (SSB) has increased since the benchmark assessment in 2002. The 1998 estimate of SSB is c. 19% of SSBMSY, and the 2012 estimate is c. 47% SSBMSY. The F2009-2011/FMSY estimate is c. 64% and results suggest that the stock has generally been exploited below maximum fishing mortality threshold (MFMT) (defined as FMSY) since the late 1990s. The 2012 stock assessment for the Red Porgy indicates that the stock is overfished (where SSB < minimum stock size threahold (MSST)), but is no longer undergoing overfishing (Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR) 2012). 

Total abundance has been stable to slightly declining from 2006 to 2011. The strongest year class (age zero fish) were predicted to have occurred in 2002 and 2005. Total biomass and spawning biomass show general decline until approximately 1999 followed by a recovery through the mid 2000s. In recent years, the recovery of the early 2000s has flattened or slightly reversed (Southeast Data, Assessment, and Review (SEDAR) 2012). Status of the southeastern U.S. stock of Red Porgy (Pagrus pagrus) was estimated from fishery-dependent and fishery-independent data, 1972-1997. New analyses indicate that dramatic changes in age structure and population abundance have occurred over the last 25 years. Results describe a dramatic increase in exploitation of this stock and a con­comitant decline in abundance. Esti­mated fully recruited fishing mortality rate (F) from the primary catch matrix increased from 0.10/yr in 1975 to 0.88/yr in 1997, and estimated static spawn­ing potential ratio (SPR) declined from about 67% to about 18%. Estimated recruitment to age one declined from a peak of 3.0 million fish in 1973-74 to 94,000 fish in 1997, a decline of 96.9%. Estimated spawning-stock bio­mass declined from a peak of 3,530 t in 1979 to 397 t in 1997, a decline of 88.8%. Long-term and marked declines in recruitment, spawning stock, and catch per unit of effort (both fishery-derived and fishery-independent) are consistent with severe overexploitation during a period of reduced recruitment (Vaughan and Prager 2002). In the southeastern United States, from 1972-74 to 1979-81, the back-calculated size-at-age increased slightly for ages two to eight. By 1988-90 and 1991-94, the back-calculated size-at-age for the same age classes was significantly smaller than that in 1979-81. In addition, size-at-maturity and size-at-sexual-transition occurred at progressively smaller sizes for 1988-90 and 1991-94. The mean size-at-age (observed and back-calculated) declined for most ages between 1988 and 1994 (Harris and McGovern 1997).  

The benchmark 2002 stock assessment for the southeastern U.S. concluded that this species was overfished at the time, but not undergoing continued overfishing (SEDAR 2002). Stock assessments indicated a declining population, and this in turn has led to a number of management measures, including a moratorium on fishing of this species in September 1999-August 2000. Simulations modelling how lack of fishery-dependent data would affect stock assessments of this species indicated that a 12-year moratorium would be needed for stock rebuilding in the southeastern USA. However, simulations showed uncertainty surrounding stock assessment estimates would increase after three years without fishery-dependent data (Davis and Berkson 2006). Fishery independent Catch Per Unit Effort (CPUE) and species composition data between the 1970s and 2005-2006 were compared for reef fishes in the vicinity of Onslow Bay, North Carolina. The CPUE of Pagrus pagrus, was greater in the 1970s than in 2005-2006 at specific capture sites. Catch rates and composition may have differed owing to differences in captains' skills and electronics despite efforts to standardize the fishing methods between periods. Estimates of total mortality are generally inconsistent with fisher observations and agree with recent stock assessments concluding that important reef species, including Pagrus pagrus, are overfished. Results suggest that fishing and possibly other variables have affected the abundance and mortality of major species  in this fishery (Ruderhausen et al. 2008).

Gulf of Mexico

The Red Porgy is very abundant in the Gulf of Mexico, where it is only lightly exploited, often taken as bycatch by fishermen targeting more desirable reef fishes (DeVries 2005). The population of this species appears to be centered in the northeast Gulf of Mexico; the Red Porgy is one of the most frequently observed reef fish in annual reef fish surveys in the area (C. Gledhill pers. comm. in DeVries 2005), and is one of the most commonly caught species on the Florida Middle Grounds (Manooch and Hassler 1978). Stocks of Pagrus pagrus in the Gulf of Mexico and along the Atlantic coast of the southeastern United States are considered separate due to genetic distance (Ball et al. 2007). The Red Porgy is an important component of the Gulf of Mexico reef fish fishery, with most of the landings coming from Florida. This species is an important component of the Florida west coast commercial reef-fish fishery and ranked 13th in total weight of reef fish landed in this area (Goodyear and Thompson 1993). In Florida, commercial landings for the Red Porgy are not distinguished from other porgies. However, given that Pagrus pagrus made up c. 50% of all porgies landed from 1995-1996, the combined west coast landings of this species were estimated at 0.5 million pounds. The recreational fishery landed an estimated 242,000 Red Porgy in Florida over the same period (1995-1996) (Goodyear and Thompson 1993, Marine Fisheries Information System 1997, Hood and Johnson 2000). In a study characterizing fishery bycatch for finfish taken by longline and vertical line fisheries in the Gulf of Mexico, the Red Porgy was the fifth most abundant fish caught (seven percent of the total fish caught by number) by vertical line, and was also one of the top species to be retained (comprising 86% of the 63,351 individuals in the kept category along with Vermilion Snapper, Red Snapper, and Red Grouper) (Scott-Denton et al. 2011). 

The Red Porgy comprise many phenotypically distinct local subpopulations (exhibiting different demographics/life history traits) within species at localities separated by no more than 10s of kilometers in the northeast Gulf of Mexico. These small-scale differences are most probably explained by spatial heterogeneity of their environment and site fidelity; Pagrus pagrus prefer live bottom habitats that are widespread but patchy and can exhibit variable hydrological, biological, geological, and ecological characteristics. In addition, adults of this species show high site fidelity, so once recruitment to a patch occurs, Red Porgy is exposed to the unique suite of factors in that particular area that may impact growth, mortality, and reproduction. It is important to examine this subpopulation structure at finer scales in order to adequately assess the status of these stocks and predict the effects of exploitation in these complex structures. This small scale population complexity has played some part in the failure of some southeastern United States reef fish fisheries to respond to management in recent years, given that fisheries have been managed in units which were based on a combination of biological, political, and administrative boundaries rather than individual spawning groups or sub-units of the population. (DeVries 2005).

South America

In Brazil, stocks are considered to be depleted after prolonged exploitation (Haimovici 1998).

Fishing efforts have reduced the annual catches in Argentina from 15,000 t in 1980 to a present value of 2,000 t (SAGPyA-DNPyA 2004). Red Porgy is a candidate for aquaculture diversification in the Mediterranean (Kalinowski et al. 2005) and is also a part of the aquaculture development project of the National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (INIDEP), Argentina (Aristizabal 2003, 2006, 2007). Pagrus pagrus is one of the top three principal species in Argentina; with total landings in 2013 reported at 4,201.1 tons (production figures not distinguished between wild caught and aquaculture landings) (Ministerio de Agricultura, Ganaderia y Pesca, accessed 10 March 2014). 

Europe

FAO catch statistics for the Mediterranean Sea show a steady increase in landings over the past 50 years, with a fluctuation between 1,700 and 4,300 mt from 1996 to 2005. It is unclear whether this steady increase is only due to increased effort or perhaps improvements in data collection. In the Azores, results of a 10-year bottom longline survey and a smaller scale hook-and-line survey indicate that the size and sex of fish caught responded to local factors rather than fishing or larger scale (geographic) factors. Young-of-the-year recruit to shallow, sandy habitats located inshore, and apparently migrate toward deeper and progressively rockier bottoms. Significant large-scale differences among islands may be attributed to exploitation, and lowest abundances were consistently found off islands subject to higher fishing effort. Recruitment to the fishery varied twice by an order of magnitude during the 10-year longline monitoring period, reflecting high natural vulnerability (Afonso et al. 2008). Off the southwestern coast of Turkey this species was once very abundant, but has declined to around 1/15th of its original population size (B. Yokes pers. comm. 2007). It is however common in Algeria (H. Kara pers. comm. 2007), other parts of Turkey (C. Bizsel and B. Yokes pers. comm. 2007) and in France (P. Francour pers.comm. 2007).
Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Pagrus pagrus is a protogynous species, associated with low-profile hard (live) bottom, rocky, or gravel habitats. This species is commonly found over irregular and low-profile hard bottoms at depths between about 20 and 200 m (Manooch and Hassler 1978). This demersal species is found over rock, rubble or sand substrata (the young are also frequently found over seagrass beds), over the continental shelf (Fischer et al. 1987) down to about 250 m depth, though more often above 100 m. This species is a carnivore, and it feeds on crustaceans, fishes and molluscs. In juveniles, crustaceans are the dominant food group, followed by molluscs and teleosts (Castriota et al. 2006). Red Porgy prefer live bottom habitat and adults exhibit considerable site fidelity, so once recruited to a given patch of habitat, this species is exposed to a unique suite of factors which could affect growth, mortality, and reproduction (DeVries 2005). It has a maximum age of 17 years (Hood and Johnson 2000, DeVries 2005). 
 
Reproduction

Spawning 

Spawning in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico occurs primarily during the winter months of December - February. Histological evidence shows that Red Porgy on depths of 20-78 m in the Gulf of Mexico spawn wherever mature individuals occur. Red Porgy are permanently sexually dichromatic, differing in the colour of the premaxilla, and to a lesser extent, the snout and forehead. There was no evidence of large, predictable spawning aggregations in the region studied (DeVries 2005). There is agreement in the spawning season in the South Atlantic Bight and that in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico, where the occurrence of late developing and hydrated oocytes peaked in January through February, with high numbers in December as well (Roumillat and Waltz 1993, DeVries 2005). Manooch (1976) recorded spawning from January through April, with a peak from March through April in North Carolina. Pagrus pagrus in the eastern Atlantic spawn slightly later: December to May, peaking from February through March, in the Canary Islands (Pajeulo and Lorenzo 1996), and January through April off Spain (Cárdenas and Calvo 2003). In the eastern Mediterranean, spawning occurred from spring to early summer, peaking in March through April (Vassilopoulou and Papaconstantinou 1992). In Argentina, spawning was observed primarily between November and January, although a low-intensity spawning was also observed at the beginning of this period (Aristizabal 2007).  

Pair spawning has been documented for this species in the Gulf of Mexico (DeVries 2005). 

Size and Age at Maturity

All females in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico were mature by age two years, estimated size and age at 50% maturity for females: 210-215 mm (TL) and under two years (DeVries 2005). On average, female Red Porgy in the South Atlantic Bight mature at sizes 50 mm larger than those found in the Gulf of Mexico (Harris and McGovern 1997, DeVries 2005). Females generally reach maturity from age one to age two at approximately 300 mm TL, and the majority of red porgy age five and older are mature males from the eastern Gulf of Mexico (Hood and Johnson 2000). In the South Atlantic Ocean, both sexes were estimated to mature at age three (Cotrina and Christiansen 1994), while around the Canary Islands, females were reported to mature in their second year and males in their third year; 50% maturity was reached at 22.6 cm (TL) by females and 26.7 cm (TL) by males (Pajuelo and Lorenzo 1996). Evidence from reared fish suggests Red Porgy mature at older ages in the eastern Atlantic. Females caught as juveniles in the eastern Mediterranean and raised in captivity first matured at age three, but by age four, 54 % were mature; males appeared to mature a little younger, with 77 % mature by age three (Kokokiris et al. 1999).

Sex Change

Red Porgy exhibits wide size and age distributions during the transitional phase. Sex change occurred wherever adult Red Porgy were found, almost exclusively from March - November in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico; sex change occurred across a wide range of sizes and ages: size at transition 206-417 mm (TL) and ages (two to nine years) (DeVries 2005). The length and age at which males comprised 50% of the population in the eastern Gulf of Mexico was recorded at 345.5 mm (TL) and 5.3 years (Hood and Johnson 2000). Sex reversal was reported to occur at four to six years old, while reproductive maturation begins at the age of three years in the eastern Mediterranean (Vassilopoulou and Papaconstantinou 1992, Kokokiris et al. 1999). Females dominate the smaller size classes and males occur at all ages (Manooch 1976). In the eastern Gulf of Mexico, the percent of females in transition level of fish > 300 mm, with the overall proportion of the females in the population steadily declining with size and age, because of the cumulative effects of sex change (DeVries 2005). There is evidence to support that sex change is not essential for all Red Porgy, with the finding of rudimentary male tissue in the largest female collected (Alekseev 1982); this supports the argument for social or exogenous control of sex change in the Red Porgy (Roumillat and Waltz 1993, Cotrina and Christiansen 1994, Pajuelo and Lorenzo 1996, Costa et al. 1997, Cotrina and Raimondo 1997, Kokokiris et al. 1999, Hood and Johnson 2000). 

Males follow two patterns of testicular development. Some individuals develop testicular tissue and their ovary degenerates before sexual maturation (primary males), while others mature and function as females for a few reproductive cycles and then change sex to males (secondary males) (Kokokiris et al. 1999). The females have an asynchronous ovarian pattern of oocyte maturation and ovulation (Kokokiris et al. 2000).
Systems:Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Pagrus pagrus is highly prized in many commercial and recreational fisheries across its range, including the coastal Atlantic Ocean off the southeastern U.S,  particularly off North and South Carolina (Vaughan and Prager 2002), southern Brazil and Argentina (Haimovici 1998, Aristizabal 2007), the eastern Mediterranean (Labroupoulou et al. 1999) and the northwest coast of Africa (Alekseev 1983). It is the second most important species for the coastal bottom fisheries conducted in the archipelago of the Azores (Afonso et al. 2008).

In the southeastern United States, this species has been harvested extensively by three major fisheries: commercial, recreational and headboat (large charter boats). All three fisheries use mainly hook and line gear and target a wide variety of temperate reef fishes (Chester et al. 1984), not exclusively red porgy. This species appears to be a good candidate for marine fish aquaculture in North America. The results from a study by Morris et al. (2008) suggest a lower larval growth rate for western Atlantic Red Porgy compared with Mediterranean red porgy culture; however, juvenile growth rates were significantly higher than previously reported.

Pagrus pagrus
is commercially very important in fisheries in the Mediterranean Sea. Its fisheries are semi-industrial (in Spain, Sicily, Egypt and Cyprus) and artisanal elsewhere, and it is also taken as a sport fish. The main catching methods are beach seines, trawl nets, bottom long lines, spear fishing and hand lines. It is regularly (in Greece, Turkey and the Maghreb) or occasionally present in markets around the Mediterranean Sea, but only rarely in those of the Adriatic Sea (Fischer et al. 1987).

It is also a species of great commercial importance for the Mediterranean Sea aquaculture industry, due to its high market demand, good growth rates and adaptability in culture conditions. The main drawbacks for the extensive commercial aquaculture production of this species are associated with its skin discoloration (Pavlidis et al. 2002) and with diseases including bacterial, viral and parasitic infections (Katharios et al. 2006).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Pagrus pagrus is commercially very important in fisheries in most parts of its range. It is a significant component of commercial and recreational fisheries. There have been significant population declines in parts of its range; these declines are well documented in the southeastern stock of the United States, where it has experienced long-term and marked declines in recruitment, spawning stock, and catch per unit of effort (both fishery-derived and fishery-independent), consistent with severe overexploitation during a period of reduced recruitment. The recent spawning-stock biomass is well below the biomass that could support maximum sustainable yield. Significant reductions in fishing mortality will be needed for rebuilding the stock in this region (Vaughan and Prager 2002). In the Mediterranean coast of Turkey, there are indications of substantial localized declines. Pagrus pagrus commonly occurs as bycatch in the grouper/snapper longline fishery of the northern U.S. Gulf of Mexico, where it composes seven percent of the total catch (Scott-Denton et al. 2011). Invasive lionfish (Pterois spp.) from the Pacific overlap in habitat with Red Porgy (Schobernd and Sedberry 2009) may be affecting recovery of Red Porgy by competing for prey and space (Cerino et al. 2013).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Pagrus pagrus is managed by the US South Atlantic Fishery Management Council for areas three to 200 miles off the coasts of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and East Florida. Recreational regulations include a 14-inch minimum size, three fish bag limit (per day or per trip, whichever is more restrictive) and an Annual Catch Limit of 154,500 lbs. (South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, http://safmc.net/FishIDandRegs/FishGallery/RedPorgy/ Accessed June 2014). Commercial regulations now include a January through April spawning-season closure, 14 inch minimum size, 120 fish trip limit and an Annual Catch Limit of 154,500 lbs (http://safmc.net/FishIDandRegs/FishGallery/RedPorgy/ Accessed June 2014). Its distribution overlaps with several marine protected areas within its range (World Database on Protected Areas, accessed 27 February 2014). Additional fishery-dependent data need to be collected to accurately assess the length of time needed for the stock to rebuild and to assess the population status in the United States (Davis and Berkson 2006). The Red Porgy is not managed in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico. 

In the Azores, P. pagrus uses large, and variable residency. Marine reserves will require larger areas for permanent protection of red porgy, but ontogenic and density-dependent dispersal could promote considerable spillover of adults to benefit local fisheries (Afonso et al. 2008).

Additional fishing regulations are recommended since it is a late maturing protogynous hermaphrodite, and more fine-scale population studies need to be conducted for the Red Porgy to adequately capture the complex population structure exhibited by this species, for management and protection of the stocks.

Citation: Russell, B., Pollard, D., Carpenter, K.E. & Vega-Cendejas, M. 2014. Pagrus pagrus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2014: e.T15873A788483. . Downloaded on 27 July 2016.
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