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Parasitism, condition and reproduction of the European hake (Merluccius merluccius) in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea

It is well known that parameters relating to physical condition and reproduction of fish provide essential data for estimating the productivity of exploited populations, as is the case with the European hake (Merluccius merluccius) in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea. Although parasitism might affect these parameters, research in this area is very scarce (and in the case of the Mediterranean almost non-existent). This study evaluates for the first time the potential link between parasitism, condition and reproduction of the European hake. Indicators of fish energy reserves (total lipid content in liver and gonads) and reproductive capacity (fecundity, egg quality and atresia) were evaluated, as were the prevalence and intensity of infection by metazoan parasites. The results indicate that the impact of anisakid nematodes is mostly negative and occurs mainly when hake are allocating their energy reserves to gonadal development. Although the results reveal a link between parasitism, condition and reproduction, we concluded that the northwestern Mediterranean hake population is in equilibrium with its metazoan parasites, which are not causing severe impairment to their physical condition or reproductive capacity

© ICES Journal of Marine Science, 2014, vol. 71, núm. 5, p. 1088-1099

Oxford University Press (OUP)

Author: Ferrer Maza, Dolors
Lloret Romañach, Josep
Muñoz Frigola, Marta
Faliex, Elisabeth
Vila Espuña, Sílvia
Sasal, Pierre
Abstract: It is well known that parameters relating to physical condition and reproduction of fish provide essential data for estimating the productivity of exploited populations, as is the case with the European hake (Merluccius merluccius) in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea. Although parasitism might affect these parameters, research in this area is very scarce (and in the case of the Mediterranean almost non-existent). This study evaluates for the first time the potential link between parasitism, condition and reproduction of the European hake. Indicators of fish energy reserves (total lipid content in liver and gonads) and reproductive capacity (fecundity, egg quality and atresia) were evaluated, as were the prevalence and intensity of infection by metazoan parasites. The results indicate that the impact of anisakid nematodes is mostly negative and occurs mainly when hake are allocating their energy reserves to gonadal development. Although the results reveal a link between parasitism, condition and reproduction, we concluded that the northwestern Mediterranean hake population is in equilibrium with its metazoan parasites, which are not causing severe impairment to their physical condition or reproductive capacity
Format: application/pdf
Citation: 021142
ISSN: 1054-3139 (versió paper)
1095-9289 (versió electrònica)
Document access: http://hdl.handle.net/10256/10124
Language: eng
Publisher: Oxford University Press (OUP)
Collection: Versió postprint del document publicat a: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/icesjms/fst217
Articles publicats (D-CCAA)
Is part of: © ICES Journal of Marine Science, 2014, vol. 71, núm. 5, p. 1088-1099
Rights: Tots els drets reservats
Subject: Lluç -- Fecunditat
Parasitisme
Hake -- Fertility
Parasitism
Title: Parasitism, condition and reproduction of the European hake (Merluccius merluccius) in the northwestern Mediterranean Sea
Type: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Repository: DUGiDocs

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