Project number: 2000-185
Project Status:
Budget expenditure: $279,254.00
Principal Investigator: Caleb Gardner
Organisation: University of Tasmania (UTAS)
Project start/end date: 23 Nov 2000 - 4 May 2005


Enhancement offers a mechanism to increase production of rock lobsters, both by increasing production from coastal reef and by providing a mechanism for biologically neutrality in the harvest of puerulus (and thus overcomes a barrier to ongrowing). Additional benefits include the ability to increase biomass and egg production in regions considered depleted, which enhances resource sustainability.

While the potential benefits of enhancement are broad, the value of the concept is critically affected by the survival of juveniles after release. Low survival would reduce the economic benefit and also nullify assumptions on the biologically neutrality of the harvest of puerulus.

The proposed project addresses the need for information on how to release juveniles (or condition juveniles prior to release) so that survival is optimised. Future release efforts will be assisted by information on habitat choice, so that return from enhancement is maximised, in terms of animals surviving through to harvest size. Large scale experiments tracking the cohorts of released juveniles will evaluate enhancement on a pilot-scale - patterns apparent in small scale experiments may not hold true in larger releases so larger scale experimental releases are considered vital.


1. To develop release protocols to minimise mortality based on the anti-predator behaviour of wild and cultured juvenile J. edwardsii.
2. To provide recommendations on release (micro)habitats for optimising the benefit of enhancement operations.
3. To evaluate the conclusions of objectives 1 and 2 in pilot scale enhancement experiments.

Final report

ISBN: 1-86295-189-6
Author: Caleb Gardner

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