Age, growth and reproductive biology of Trygonorrhina fasciata and Dentiraja australis

Published online 17. December 2020

Age, growth and reproductive biology of two endemic demersal bycatch elasmobranchs: Trygonorrhina fasciata and Dentiraja australis (Chondrichthyes: Rhinopristiformes, Rajiformes) from Eastern Australia

Marcelo Reis, Will F. Figueira


Bottom-dwelling elasmobranchs, such as guitarfishes, skates and stingrays are highly susceptible species to bycatch due to the overlap between their distribution and area of fishing operations. Catch data for this group is also often merged in generic categories preventing species-specific assessments. Along the east coast of Australia, the Eastern Fiddler Ray, Trygonorrhina fasciata (Muller & Henle, 1841), and the Sydney Skate, Dentiraja australis (Macleay, 1884), are common components of bycatch yet there is little information about their age, growth and reproductive timing, making impact assessment difficult. In this study the age and growth (from vertebral bands) as well as reproductive parameters of these two species are estimated and reported based on 171 specimens of Eastern Fiddler Rays (100 females and 71 males) and 81 Sydney Skates (47 females and 34 males). Based on von Bertalanffy growth curve fits, Eastern Fiddler Rays grew to larger sizes than Sydney Skate but did so more slowly (ray: L∞ = 109.61, t0 = 0.26 and K = 0.20; skate: L∞ = 51.95, t0 = -0.99 and K = 0.34 [both sexes combined]). Both species had higher liver weight ratios (HSI) during austral summer. Gonadal weight ratios (GSI) were higher in the austral winter for Eastern Fiddler and in the austral spring for Sydney Skates.

Zoologia (Curitiba) vol.37 Curitiba 2020 Epub Jan 18, 2021, DOI: 10.3897/zoologia.37.e49318


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