The population biology of the thornback ray, Raja clavata in Caernarfon Bay, north Wales

J. M. Whittamore, I. D. McCarthy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

Amid concern about the status of skates and rays in Welsh waters the present work set out to provide up-to-date information on the population biology of Raja clavata in Caernarfon Bay. The von Bertalanffy growth parameters were L=100.9 cm, k=0.18 y-1 and t0=-0.95 y for males; and L=117.6 cm, k=0.16 y-1 and t 0=-0.7 y for females. Male R. clavata reached 50% maturity at 58.8 cm and 3.9 y, which was smaller and younger than females (L50 and A50 were 70.5 cm and 5.3 y, respectively). Although previously over-exploited, the present estimate of total mortality (Z) was 0.48-0.49 y -1 which, in terms of replacement mortality (calculated as 0.7 y -1), suggests no immediate prospect of recruitment failure for R. clavata in Caernarfon Bay. The potential for the recovery of a depleted population is discussed in relation to the Allee effect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1089-1094
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom
Volume85
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2005
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science

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