A re-examination of the growth of the gummy shark from Queensland

Published on
20 July 2022

A re-examination of the growth of the gummy shark (Mustelus antarcticus) from Queensland, Australia

Matthew J. Campbell, Cassandra L. Rigby


The gummy shark (Mustelus antarcticus) is endemic to Australia and is the target of commercial fisheries in southern Australia. However, the Queensland population is subjected to low levels of fishing mortality. The present study re-analysed a limited length-at-age dataset collected from central Queensland to estimate growth parameters in a Bayesian framework, with informative priors for size-at-birth and maximum size. Growth parameters were estimated using a multi-model approach. This study showed that M. antarcticus caught in Queensland exhibits slow growth compared with conspecifics in southern Australia, and females grow slower and larger than do males. The combined length-at-age data for males and females was best described by the von Bertalanffy growth function and the growth parameters were L∞ = 1852 mm (total length, TL), L0 = 261 mm TL and k = 0.044 year−1 for males and females combined. The ‘BayesGrowth’ R package offers a simple method to minimise bias in the estimation of growth parameters from a limited length-at-age dataset in a Bayesian framework.

Marine and Freshwater Research, DOI: 10.1071/MF22066


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