Scientia Marina, Vol 70, No S2 (2006)

Spawning areas and larval distributions of anchovy Engraulis encrasicolus in relation to environmental conditions in the Gulf of Tunis (Central Mediterranean Sea)


https://doi.org/10.3989/scimar.2006.70s2137

Rafik Zarrad
Institut National des Sciences et Technologies de la Mer (INSTM)

Hechmi Missaoui
Institut National Agronomique de Tunisie

Institut Supérieur de la Pêche et de l’Aquaculture de Bizerte,

Francisco Alemany
Instituto Español de Oceanografía.

Romdhane Mohamed Salah
Institut National Agronomique de Tunisie

Alberto Garcia
Instituto Español de Oceanografía.

M'rabet Ridha
Institut National des Sciences et Technologies de la Mer (INSTM)

Jarboui Othman
Institut National des Sciences et Technologies de la Mer (INSTM)

El Abed Amor
Institut National Agronomique de Tunisie

Abstract


Early life stages of anchovy were investigated in the Gulf of Tunis by means of four seasonal surveys carried out from summer 2002 to spring 2003. Anchovy eggs and larvae were found all year round, but they were much more abundant in spring and summer. In spring, the main spawning area was located in the north of the Gulf, to the west and southwest of Zembra Island. In summer, higher egg and larva abundances were also observed to the southwest of Zembra Island, but secondary spawning grounds were detected in the vicinity of the mouths of the Rivers Majreda and Meliane. No direct correlations between sea surface temperature (SST), salinity (SSS) and chlorophyll a and the horizontal distribution of eggs and larvae were observed. However, egg distributions in all seasons and larval distributions in summer and autumn were significantly related to depth. The temporal variation of temperature seems to control the spawning intensity and the beginning of spawning seems to be triggered by the increase in SST.

Keywords


eggs; larvae; Engraulis encrasicolus; spawning area; Gulf of Tunis

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