AbstractThe Gandoca-Manzanillo National Wildlife Refuge is located on the Caribbean coast at the southeast comer of Costa Rica, near the Panamanian border. Postlarvae of the lobster Panulirus argus were collected in eight stations nsing floating plastic fiber collectors. Three pigmentation stages were found (n=1057). The month1y settlement index showed a maximum peak, (1.635 postlarvaelhour/collector) in July. The larvae were more abundant during dark moon and in sand substrate habitats, suggesting the importance of the nearshore envrronments as postlarval nursery areas. Length did not vary significantly between postlarval stages and was 1.350-1.900 cm. Control of fishing gear and techruques, and the protection and reforestation of the coastal and riverine forest, are recommended.
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