Scientia Marina, Vol 77, No 2 (2013)

Reproductive output traits of the simultaneous hermaphrodite Serranus scriba in the western Mediterranean

Josep Alós
Instituto Mediterráneo de Estudios Avanzados (IMEDEA), CSIC-UIB , Spain

Alexandre Alonso-Fernández
Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas (IIM), CSIC , Spain

Ignacio A. Catalán
Instituto Mediterráneo de Estudios Avanzados (IMEDEA), CSIC-UIB , Spain

Miquel Palmer
Instituto Mediterráneo de Estudios Avanzados (IMEDEA), CSIC-UIB , Spain

Susan Lowerre-Barbieri
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Fish and Wildlife Research Institute , United States


We studied multiple individual parameters that affect the reproductive output in the painted comber Serranus scriba, a simultaneous hermaphroditic fish that is widely exploited by recreational fishing in temperate marine coastal regions. Batch fecundity was significantly affected by maternal size, but was not related to maternal age or condition. However, egg quality as estimated by egg dry weight was significantly influenced by the interaction effect of maternal size and age. An empirical assessment demonstrated the existence of a diel spawning pattern based on a daily release of a partial fraction of eggs related to sunset time. Buoyancy varied during the incubation period, but it consistently resulted in positive buoyancy that situated the eggs near the top of the water column. This study represents the first estimation of reproductive output of the simultaneous hermaphrodites S. scriba and also provides a comprehensive study about the potential maternal factors that affect egg production. These results are a crucial step towards ongoing efforts to improve the stock assessment of this species.


batch fecundity; egg buoyancy; egg quality; maternal effects; Mediterranean; Serranus scriba

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