Scientia Marina, Vol 76, No 3 (2012)

Age, growth and utility of otolith morphometrics as a predictor of age in the wrasse Coris julis (Labridae) from the eastern Adriatic Sea

Frane Škeljo
University of Split, Center of Marine Studies , Croatia

Josipa Ferri
University of Split, Center of Marine Studies , Croatia

Jure Brčić
University of Split, Center of Marine Studies , Croatia

Mirela Petrić
University of Split, Center of Marine Studies , Croatia

Ivan Jardas
University of Split, Center of Marine Studies , Croatia


Age and growth of Coris julis were determined by examining sagittal otoliths belonging to fish sampled between November 2008 and October 2009 in the eastern Adriatic Sea (north-central Mediterranean Sea). A total of 1102 specimens (528 males, 487 females and 87 individuals of indeterminate sex), ranging from 48 to 222 mm total length were analysed. Ninety-two per cent of the otoliths were readable and 68% of the specimens had two readings in agreement. Counting of daily rings revealed that the second opaque ring represents the first annulus (315.1±27.8 daily rings). The maximum observed age was 7 years for males and 5 years for females, with males dominating in higher age classes ( > 3 years) and females in age classes 1+ and 2+. Growth was described by the von Bertalanffy growth curves and significant differences were found between males (L=29.10 cm, k=0.12 and t0=–1.48) and females (L=21.27 cm, k=0.21 and t0=–1.08). Otolith mass, length, width and thickness were determined for the otoliths belonging to 465 fish and the utility of these morphometrics as a predictor of age was evaluated. The most precise age estimations were obtained from the otolith length data, followed by the otolith mass.


age; growth; daily rings; otolith morphometrics; Coris julis; Adriatic Sea

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