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Daily growth patterns of six species of young-of-the-year of Chilean intertidal fishes

  • Guido Plaza (a1), Mauricio F. Landaeta (a2), C. Valeria Espinoza (a3) and F. Patricio Ojeda (a3)

Otolith microstructure analysis was used to reveal daily growth patterns of young-of-the year (YOY) of six species of perciform fishes, Bovichtus chilensis (Bovichtidae), Girella laevifrons and Graus nigra (Kyphosidae), Helcogrammoides chilensis (Tripterygiidae) and Hypsoblennius sordidus and Scartichthys viridis (Blenniidae). YOY collected in intertidal pools from June to December 2008 in Central Chile, ranged from 24 to 76 mm total length and from 25 to 390 days of age. In the six species, sagittal otoliths showed a slightly oval shape, symmetrical and laterally compressed and showed micro-increments distinguishable after a two-side polishing. Increment width of sagittae showed two patterns irrespective of hatch month and species: (i) a parabolic growth with wider increment widths (during the first 150 of YOY life, e.g. B. chilensis, G. nigra and G. laevifrons); and (ii) a more irregular pattern with lower increment widths during most of the seasons in H. chilensis and H. sordidus. Further results were: (i) a unique central primordium enclosed by two checks after which distinctive increments were deposited; (ii) low instantaneous growth rates estimated through the slope of the length-at-age relationship (range 0.1–0.21 mm d1 ); and (iii) a linear fish size–otolith size relationship.

Corresponding author
Correspondence should be addressed to: G. Plaza, Escuela de Ciencias del Mar, Facultad de Recursos Naturales, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, Avenida Altamirano 1480, Casilla 1020, Valparaíso, Chile email:
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