Scientia Marina, Vol 80, No 1 (2016)

Life-history strategies of a conspicuous reef fish, the Canary damsel Similiparma lurida (Pomacentridae) in the northeastern Atlantic

Antonio M. García-Mederos
IU-ECOAQUA, Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria , Spain

Fernando Tuya
IU-ECOAQUA, Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria , Spain

Víctor M. Tuset
Instituto de Ciencias del Mar (ICM-CSIC) , Spain


Similiparma lurida is a common fish inhabiting shallow-water rocky bottoms of the northeastern Atlantic oceanic archipelagos, and the coasts from Portugal to Senegal. This study was conceptualized to integrate information relative to key population traits of S. lurida, including length and age structure, growth, reproduction and length at maturity, with a description of abundance patterns on shallow reefs, including temporality of recruitment and habitat preferences by juveniles, sub-adults and adults. We then hypothesized that seasonal cycles of spawning and recruitment were synchronized. This species reaches a total length (TL) of up to 15.7 cm and an age of 18 years. Males grow faster and longer (K=0.28 years–1, L=14.487 cm TL) than females (K=0.23 years–1, L=13.461 cm TL), which affects the overall ratio of males to females (1:0.26). The size at which 50% of sexual maturity is reached was 10.344 cm TL for males and 8.471 cm TL for females. Fish increase growth during the spawning season, which occurs from November to March, including a maximum in February. After two months of this peak, juveniles reached maximum abundances (April) in high relief reef areas. Adults, however, show a preference towards rocky bottoms covered with algae interspersed with sand patches, suggesting ontogenetic changes in microhabitat preferences when juveniles turn into adults


Pomacentridae; Similiparma lurida; life history; recruitment; coastal fish; spatial distribution; northeastern Atlantic

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