TERRAPUB Aqua-BioScience Monographs

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Vol. 2 (No. 2), pp. 1-56, 2009 doi:10.5047/absm.2009.00202.0001

Behavioral Ontogeny of Marine Pelagic Fishes with the Implications for the Sustainable Management of Fisheries Resources

Reiji Masuda

Maizuru Fisheries Research Station, Kyoto University

Nagahama, Maizuru, Kyoto 625-0086, Japan

(Received on June 12, 2008; Accepted on February 15, 2009; Published online on April 8, 2009)

Abstract: Behavioral ontogeny of marine pelagic fishes is reviewed in the context of sustainable fisheries resource management. In carangid fishes, development of sensory organs corresponds with their basic behavior such as phototaxis and optokinetic response, whereas the onset of schooling requires the development of the central nervous systems (CNS). Because docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is indispensable for the development of CNS, quality as well as quantity of prey is important for the development of behavior and thus survival. Among common pelagic fishes, chub mackerel, Scomber japonicus, had the best growth performance and their cruise swimming speed was remarkably fast. Japanese anchovy, Engraulis japonicus, were slow both at cruise and burst swimming speeds, and were extremely vulnerable to predation by jellyfish. Jack mackerel were slow at cruise swimming speed, but they can make use of jellyfish as a refuge and as a prey collector. Each biotic and abiotic environmental factor, such as water temperature, the amount of phytoplankton, copepods and jellyfish, may work in a positive or negative way for each species, and this can be a driving force for the replacement of predominant fish species. Considering that there are always competition and predator­prey relations among different pelagic fish species, ecosystem based management is indispensable for the sustainable utilization of pelagic fishes.

Keywords: behavioral ontogeny, schooling, docosahesaenoic acid, Pseudocaranx dentex, Seriola quinqueradiata, Trachurus japonicus, jellyfish, recruitment

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