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Life-history changes in exploited reef fishes on the east coast of South Africa


Buxton, CD, Life-history changes in exploited reef fishes on the east coast of South Africa, Environmental Biology of Fishes, 36, (1) pp. 47 - 63. ISSN 0378-1909 (1993) [Refereed Article]

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DOI: doi:10.1007/BF00005979


The impact of exploitation on various life-history characteristics of two sex changing, reef-dwelling sparid species was examined by comparing populations protected in a large marine reserve with those adjacent to the reserve. Like other sparids, Chrysoblephus laticeps and C. cristiceps grow slowly and are long lived, reaching ages of 17 and 21 years, respectively. No significant differences in the growth rate of C. laticeps were measured, but growth in C. cristiceps was significantly slower in the exploited population. Observed data showed that sex ratios outside the marine reserve were skewed towards the females, a result of size selective exploitation. Size at sex change was also significantly smaller for C. cristiceps in the exploited area, but not so for C. laticeps. This difference between the species was explained as a function of the size at recruitment into the fishery and the degree of protection afforded both large females and male fish. Considering the possibility that reproduction could be impaired as a result of changes in population structure, the tactic of protection through marine reserves is supported as a hedge against recruitment failure.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Age - Growth - Mortality - Reproduction - Sex change - Marine reserve - Exploitation
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Fisheries sciences
Research Field:Fisheries sciences not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the environmental sciences
UTAS Author:Buxton, CD (Professor Colin Buxton)
ID Code:48449
Year Published:1993
Web of Science® Times Cited:131
Deposited By:TAFI - Marine Research Laboratory
Deposited On:2007-08-01
Last Modified:2009-11-10
Downloads:7 View Download Statistics

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