Age, growth and maturity of oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus) from Papua New Guinea

D'Alberto, Brooke M., Chin, Andrew, Smart, Jonathan J., Baje, Leontine, White, William, and Simpfendorfer, Colin A. (2017) Age, growth and maturity of oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus) from Papua New Guinea. Marine and Freshwater Research, 68 (6). pp. 1118-1129.

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Oceanic whitetip sharks (Carcharhinus longimanus) in the Western Central Pacific have been overfished and require improved assessment and management to enable planning of recovery actions. Samples from 103 individuals (70 males and 33 females; 76.0-240- and 128-235-cm total length (TL) respectively) were used to estimate age, growth and maturity parameters from sharks retained by longline fisheries in Papua New Guinea. Back-calculation was used because of the low number of juveniles and a multimodel framework with Akaike's information criterion corrected for small sample size (AIC(c)) estimated growth parameters. The von Bertalanffy growth model provided the best fitting growth model for both sexes. Parameter estimates for males were: asymptotic length (L-infinity) = 315.6 cm TL; growth coefficient (k) = 0.059 year(-1); and length at birth (L-0) = 75.1 cm TL. For females, the parameter estimates were: L-infinity = 316.7 cm TL; k = 0.057 year(-1); and L-0 = 74.7 cm TL. Maximum age was estimated to be 18 years for males and 17 years for females, with a calculated longevity of 24.6 and 24.9 years respectively. Males matured at 10.0 years and 193 cm TL, whereas females matured at 15.8 years and 224 cm TL. C. longimanus is a slow-growing, late-maturity species, with regional variation in life history parameters, highlighting increased vulnerability to fishing pressure in this region.

Item ID: 50397
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1448-6059
Keywords: pelagic shark fisheries, vertebral analysis, Western Central Pacific Ocean, fisheries, age and growth, tuna, bycatch
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Gold Open Access articles are published under a CC-BY-NC-ND licence: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 (

Funders: National Fisheries Authority (NFA), Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR)
Projects and Grants: ACIAR project FIS/2012/102
Date Deposited: 20 Sep 2017 08:35
FoR Codes: 30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3005 Fisheries sciences > 300505 Fisheries management @ 20%
30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3005 Fisheries sciences > 300502 Aquaculture and fisheries stock assessment @ 20%
31 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 3109 Zoology > 310903 Animal developmental and reproductive biology @ 60%
SEO Codes: 83 ANIMAL PRODUCTION AND ANIMAL PRIMARY PRODUCTS > 8302 Fisheries - Wild Caught > 830204 Wild Caught Fin Fish (excl. Tuna) @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960808 Marine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 30%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9607 Environmental Policy, Legislation and Standards > 960701 Coastal and Marine Management Policy @ 20%
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