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MEPS
Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 602:225-235 (2018)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/meps12675

Impact of fishing losses of males on the reproductive output of the large protogynous fish, Choerodon schoenleinii

Taku Sato1,6,*, Masato Kobayashi1,7, Takeo Kurihara2, Takayuki Takebe1,8, Narisato Hirai1,9, Koichi Okuzawa1,10, Sayumi Sawaguchi3,8, Takahiro Matsubara4, Yuichi Akita5, Akihiko Ebisawa5, Itaru Ohta5, Masato Uehara5, Tamaki Shimose1, Tomofumi Yamaguchi1, Rihito Shinoda1, Masahiko Koiso1, Kazuhisa Teruya1,8

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ABSTRACT: Protogynous fishes are major components of commercial fisheries worldwide. They can compensate for fishing losses of males through socially controlled sex change. If their resiliency, however, is insufficient to compensate for male loss, their reproductive output can decline. Understanding the effects of fishing losses of males on reproductive output of stocks requires a detailed understanding of species-specific physiological constraints on sex change and gametogenesis. The potential impact of fishing losses of males on the reproductive output of the large protogynous species Choerodon schoenleinii was investigated by assessing the seasonality of male fishing pressure using market research. In addition, laboratory experiments imitating male removal from a social group through fishing were used to assess (1) whether females change sex during the spawning season, (2) the period after change that is required for an individual to become a functionally mature male, (3) whether individuals have sufficient capacity to fertilize batches of spawned eggs just after sex change, and (4) the impact of fishing losses of males on reproductive output of a social group. Following removal of males from 8 artificial social groups, only one female changed sex. The inability of most females to change sex during the spawning season and the slow rate of sex change may be closely related to the low natural mortality and long lifespan of this species. The female that changed sex showed low fertilization rates for at least 1 mo after sex change. Males are fished from stocks mainly before and during the spawning season, which will result in a large reduction in reproductive output due to male limitation and lower fertilization rates.


KEY WORDS: Sex change · Protogynous fish · Fishing losses of males · Reproductive output · Fertilization rate · Choerodon schoenleinii


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Cite this article as: Sato T, Kobayashi M, Kurihara T, Takebe T and others (2018) Impact of fishing losses of males on the reproductive output of the large protogynous fish, Choerodon schoenleinii. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 602:225-235. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps12675

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