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ESR 54:277-284 (2024)  -  DOI:

Resource use by Sphyrna mokarran and S. lewini (Chondrichthyes) neonates and juveniles in the western Arabian Gulf: a stable isotope analysis

Yu-Jia Lin1, Hua Hsun Hsu1,2,3,*, Zahid Nazeer2, Premlal Panickan2, Rommel H. Maneja2, Diego Lozano-Cortés4, Ali Qasem4, Antonio Delgado Huertas5, Lotfi Jilani Rabaoui2,6

1Institute of Marine Ecology and Conservation, National Sun Yat-sen University, 804 Kaohsiung, Taiwan, RoC
2Applied Research Center for Environment and Marine Studies, Research and Innovation, King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, 32161 Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
3Coastal and Offshore Fishery Research Center, Fisheries Research Institute, Ministry of Agriculture, 80672 Kaohsiung, Taiwan, RoC
4Environmental Protection Department, Saudi Aramco, 31311 Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
5Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra, IACT, (CSIC-UGR), 18100 Armilla, Spain
6National Center for Wildlife, 12411 Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: The great hammerhead shark Sphyrna mokarran and the scalloped hammerhead shark S. lewini are marine top predators with global distributions. However, limited information is available on the trophic ecology of hammerhead sharks in the Indian Ocean. In this study, we measured stable nitrogen and carbon isotopes in the muscle tissues of neonates and juveniles of S. mokarran and S. lewini from the waters of the western Arabian Gulf. In general, values of δ15N were lower in S. mokarran (10.8-18.7‰) than in S. lewini (12.2-18.7‰), indicating a reliance on food sources with low nitrogen values. Isotopic niche similarities were observed between female and male S. mokarran. We further observed considerable ontogenetic changes in the δ15N values of both S. mokarran and S. lewini neonates (a reduction from 19 to 12‰), reflecting the maternal effect. The effects of total length and sex on the nitrogen and stable isotope values were nonsignificant in S. mokarran juveniles. The western Arabian Gulf likely serves as a key feeding ground for both the neonates and the juveniles of S. mokarran. By contrast, S. lewini appears to have a low level of reliance on this region.

KEY WORDS: Hammerhead shark · Sphyrna · Arabian Gulf · Trophic ecology · δ15N · δ13C

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Cite this article as: Lin Y-J, Hsu HH, Nazeer Z, Panickan P and others (2024) Resource use by Sphyrna mokarran and S. lewini (Chondrichthyes) neonates and juveniles in the western Arabian Gulf: a stable isotope analysis. Endang Species Res 54:277-284.

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