Geographic influences on and the accuracy and precision of age estimates for the red bass,
Lutjanus bohar (Forsskal); a large tropical reef fish
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Marriot, RJ and Mapstone, BD, Geographic influences on and the accuracy and precision of age estimates for the red bass,
Lutjanus bohar (Forsskal); a large tropical reef fish, Fisheries Research, 80, (2-3) pp. 322-328. ISSN 0165-7836 (2006) [Refereed Article]
The red bass is a large tropical reef fish (Lutjanidae, tropical snappers) that is harvested to varying extents throughout a widespread Indo-Pacific distribution. The aims of this study were to investigate the accuracy and precision of age estimates from transverse sections of sagittal otoliths and to assess effects on these of the geographic area of collection and otolith preparation method. Two independent validation studies suggested an approximately annual formation of annuli in otoliths, predominantly for otoliths with 4-10 annuli but also for one otolith with 29 annuli. Otolith sections produced exceptionally high annulus counts: up to 56 annuli for samples from the Great Barrier Reef (GBR), Australia; and up to 55 annuli from the Seychelles, indicating a high longevity for this species. The precision of otolith readings from the GBR (index of average percent error, IAPE = 3.21 ± 0.26 S.E.) was within commonly accepted bounds for age estimation (IAPE up to 5%) but precision of readings from the Seychelles was significantly lower (IAPE = 9.18 ± 0.47 S.E.) and outside of this "acceptable" range. Age-based biological parameters for red bass from the Seychelles should thus be applied with greater caution than those for red bass from the GBR. If basic demographic properties are assumed relatively constant across the wide geographic range sampled, however, results from the GBR could be used as more reliable preliminary data for precautionary management strategies in the Seychelles and elsewhere. © 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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