Proceedings of the International Workshop on age determination of oceanic pelagic fishes: Tunas, billfishes, and sharks, Miami, Florida, February 15-18,1982
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AbstractAccurate and precise estimates of age and growth rates are essential parameters in understanding the population dynamics of fishes. Some of the more sophisticated stock assessment models, such as virtual population analysis, require age and growth information to partition catchdata by age. Stock assessment efforts by regulatory agencies are usually directed at specific fisherieswhich are being heavily exploited and are suspected of being overfished. Interest in stock assessment of some of the oceanic pelagic fishes (tunas, billfishes, and sharks) has developed only over the last decade, during which exploitation has increased steadily in response to increases in worldwide demand for these resources.Traditionally, estimating the age of fishes has been done by enumerating growth bands on skeletal hardparts, through length frequency analysis, tag and recapture studies, and raising fish in enclosures. However, problems related to determining the age of some of the oceanic pelagic fishesare unique compared with other species. For example, sampling is difficult for these large, highly mobile fishes because of their size, extensive distributions throughout the world's oceans, and for some, such as the marlins, infrequent catches. In addition, movements of oceanic pelagic fishes often transect temperate as well as tropical oceans, making interpretation of growth bands onskeletal hardparts more difficult than with more sedentary temperate species. Many oceanic pelagics are also long-lived, attaining ages in excess of 30 yr, and more often than not, their life cycles do not lend themselves easily to artificial propagation and culture. These factors contribute to the difficulty of determining ages and are generally characteristic of this group-the tunas, billfishes, and sharks. Accordingly, the rapidly growing international concern in managing oceanic pelagic fishes, as well as unique difficulties in ageing these species, prompted us to hold this workshop.Our two major objectives for this workshop are to: I) Encourage the interchange of ideas on this subject, and 2) establish the "state of the art." A total of 65 scientists from 10 states in the continental United States and Hawaii, three provinces in Canada, France, Republic of Senegal,Spain, Mexico, Ivory Coast, and New South Wales (Australia) attended the workshop held at the Southeast Fisheries Center, Miami, Fla., 15-18 February 1982.Our first objective, encouraging the interchange of ideas, is well illustrated in the summaries of the Round Table Discussions and in the Glossary, which defines terms used in this volume. The majority of the workshop participants agreed that the lack of validation of age estimates and themeans to accomplish the same are serious problems preventing advancements in assessing the age and growth of fishes, particularly oceanic pelagics. The alternatives relating to the validation problem were exhaustively reviewed during the Round Table Discussions and are a major highlight of this workshop. How well we accomplished our second objective, to establish the "state of the art" on age determination of oceanic pelagic fishes, will probably best be judged on the basis of these proceedings and whether future research efforts are directed at the problem areas we have identified.In order to produce high-quality papers, workshop participants served as referees for the manuscripts published in this volume. Several papers given orally at the workshop, and included in these proceedings, were summarized from full-length manuscripts, which have been submitted to or published in other scientific outlets-these papers are designated as SUMMARY PAPERS. In addition, the SUMMARY PAPER designation was also assigned to workshop papers that represented very preliminary or initial stages of research, cursory progress reports, papers that weredata shy, or provide only brief reviews on general topics. Bilingual abstracts were included for allpapers that required translation.We gratefully acknowledge the support of everyone involved in this workshop. Funding was provided by the Southeast Fisheries Center, and Jack C. Javech did the scientific illustrations appearing on the cover, between major sections, and in the Glossary. (PDF file contains 228 pages.)
Publisher or UniversityNOAA/National Marine Fisheries Service
Series : NrNOAA Technical Report NMFS