Use of otolithometry to determine Asian shortraker rockfish population structure

Use of otolithometry to determine Asian shortraker rockfish population structure

A.M. Orlov, A.A. Abramov, and E.V. Stolyarova

Use of otolithometry to determine Asian shortraker rockfish population structureThis is part of Biology, Assessment, and Management of North Pacific Rockfishes
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Description

The shortraker rockfish, Sebastes borealis, is an important target of bottom trawl and longline fisheries in the North Pacific Ocean. Its population structure is still uncertain, and there are two different theories on the life history of this species. Some authors think that shortraker rockfish is a non-migrating species, which forms many local populations within its range. Other investigators suggest that currents may transport pelagic larvae and juveniles of this species far from their spawning grounds and then, after reaching maturity, they undergo lengthy reverse migrations. Otolith studies may be useful to improve our knowledge of the population structure of shortraker rockfish. Otoliths of these fish were sampled in nine different geographic areas of the northwestern Pacific (northern Kuril Islands, southeastern Kamchatka, six large Kamchatka bays, and the Koryak slope) to define possible distinctions among fish. Length, width, and weight of otoliths of shortraker rockfish were measured from about 1,500 fish. Results are presented of a comparative statistical analysis of the relationship between these otolith characteristics for the fish of different areas. The otolith analysis did not yield any conclusive results about shortraker rockfish population structure.

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