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Distribution and reproductive biology of deep-sea grenadier fish (famity: Macrouridae) from the Northwestern Mediterranean sea

AuthorsFernandez-Arcaya, U. ; Recasens, Laura ; Ramírez-Llodra, Eva ; Rotllant, Guiomar ; Cerviño, C.; Bruno, Miguel; Company, Joan B.
Issue DateJun-2010
Citation12th International Deep-Sea Biology Symposium (2010)
AbstractThe present study is an analysis of seasonal and depth-related trends in abundance, biomass, body size and reproductive strategies of four grenadier species Coelorinchus mediterraneus, Coryphaenoides guentheri, Nezumia aequalis, and Trachyrinchus scabrus of the deep western Mediterranean. The specimens were obtained using an OTMS bottom trawl along a seasonal period (autumn 2008 - autumn 2009), inside and outside the Blanes Canyon (Catalan Sea) at depths between 900 m and 2000 m. These species present a different depth range distribution: Nezumia aequalis and Trachyrinchus scabrus show its maximum in abundance and biomass at upper slope (900–1050 m), Coelorinchus mediterraneus at middle slope (1200–1500 m) and Coryphaenoides guentheri at lower slope (1500–2000 m). Size trends varied depending on the species. Females grow larger than males and, except for Coelorinchus mediterraneus, females outnumbered males. The Mediterranean Sea is a physically fairly constant and oligotrophic environment. Hence, we might expect a consistent pattern of reproduction of all the above-mentioned species. In contrast, the macroscopic and microscopic analyses of the gonads exhibit different reproductive strategies within the macrourid family, which vary between continuous (Nezumia aequalis), quasi-continuous (Coelorinchus mediterraneus) and seasonal (Trachyrinchus scabrus and Coryphaenoides guentheri) reproductive cycle. The adoption of different reproductive strategies is probably related to avoid competence between these species for the same trophic resources. Moreover, our results indicate that the main reproductive period is from autumn to winter, coinciding with the formation of mixed layers in the Mediterranean Sea. This further corroborates the hypothesis that reproductive periods in deep-sea fish have adapted to fluxes of organic matter from the photic zone. Further analyses of additional species belong to the same deep-sea community (e.g. Moridae and Notacanthidae) and the characterization of the environmental conditions will help us in finding the existence of a general demographic and reproductive pattern and identifying the underlying environmental factors
Description12th International Deep-Sea Biology Symposium, 7-11 June 2010, Reykjavík, Iceland
Appears in Collections:(ICM) Comunicaciones congresos
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