Sunday, 20 May 2018

Big fish produce disproportionately more and bigger eggs



A big deal for fisheries

Date:  May 10, 2018
Source:  Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute

What difference does it make whether an angler catches one big fish or two smaller fish, each half its weight? Experts assumed that big and small fish invest the same proportion of their energy to make eggs. But a new report in Science by a Smithsonian biologist and colleagues shows that plus-sized females invest disproportionately more in the number of eggs and the size of individual eggs. Therefore, taking a single big fish has a bigger impact on the fish population than taking multiple small ones.

"Our results are critical for fisheries management: They tell us to reduce fishing pressure on large fish rather than smaller ones in order to maintain and replenish stocks," said staff scientist D. Ross Robertson at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) in Panama. "We need to focus on reducing fishing pressure on large fish rather than exploiting them more heavily than small fish."


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