Effects of region, demography, and protection from fishing on batch fecundity of common coral trout (Plectropomus leopardus)

Carter, Alex B., Davies, Campbell R., Mapstone, Bruce D., Russ, Garry R., Tobin, Andrew J., and Williams, Ashley J. (2014) Effects of region, demography, and protection from fishing on batch fecundity of common coral trout (Plectropomus leopardus). Coral Reefs, 33 (3). pp. 751-763.

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Abstract

Batch fecundity of female Plectropomus leopardus, a coral reef fish targeted by commercial and recreational fishing, was compared between reefs open to fishing and reefs within no-take marine reserves within three regions of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR), Australia. Length, weight, and age had positive effects on batch fecundity of spawners from northern and central reefs but negligible effects on spawners from southern reefs. Females were least fecund for a given length, weight, and age in the southern GBR. Batch fecundity of a 500-mm fork length female was 430 % greater on central reefs and 207 % greater on northern reefs than on southern reefs. The effects of length and age on batch fecundity did not differ significantly between reserve and fished reefs in any region, but weight-specific fecundity was 100 % greater for large 2.0 kg females on reserve reefs compared with fished reefs in the central GBR. We hypothesize that regional variation in batch fecundity is likely driven by water temperature and prey availability. Significant regional variation in batch fecundity highlights the need for understanding spatial variation in reproductive output where single conservation or fishery management strategies cover large, potentially diverse, spatial scales.

Item ID: 35760
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: batch spawn, coral reef fish, fishing, Great Barrier Reef, marine reserve, reproduction
ISSN: 1432-0975
Funders: CRC Reef Research Centre, Fisheries Research and Development Corporation, Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA), James Cook University
Date Deposited: 15 Oct 2014 16:44
FoR Codes: 07 AGRICULTURAL AND VETERINARY SCIENCES > 0704 Fisheries Sciences > 070403 Fisheries Management @ 50%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060803 Animal Developmental and Reproductive Biology @ 50%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9613 Remnant Vegetation and Protected Conservation Areas > 961303 Protected Conservation Areas in Marine Environments @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9605 Ecosystem Assessment and Management > 960507 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Marine Environments @ 50%
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