Fecundity regulation in horse mackerel

C.J.G. van Damme, A. Thorsen, M. Fonn, P. Alvarez, D. Garabana, B. O'Hea, J.R. Perez, M. Dickey-Collas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Egg production methods have been used successfully in the provision of advice for fisheries management. These methods need accurate and unbiased estimates of fecundity. We explore the reproductive strategy of horse mackerel and estimation of fecundity. Fecundity and fecundity regulation in relation to condition was investigated over a number of years. Fulton's K, lipid content, and hepatosomatic index increased after the start of spawning, though decreased again at the end of spawning. The increase in the gonadosomatic index, fecundity, and body condition after the onset of spawning suggests that horse mackerel utilizes food resources during the spawning season and might be an income breeder. However, the decline in K and lipid before the spawning season suggests that the first batch of oocytes is developed on stored energy. Fecundity varied between years and within a spawning season. Over latitude, variations in fecundity were small. K and lipid content are not reliable indices as proxy for fecundity. Batch fecundity appears to be heterogeneous across the spawning season but homogeneous across latitude. The homogeneity of batch fecundity over latitude could indicate that the daily egg production method is an appropriate approach for estimating the abundance of a wide ranging species, as horse mackerel.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)546-558
JournalICES Journal of Marine Science
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • daily egg-production
  • herring clupea-harengus
  • trachurus-trachurus l.
  • pleuronectes-platessa l
  • saronikos gulf greece
  • scomber-scombrus l.
  • north-sea plaice
  • cod gadus-morhua
  • batch fecundity
  • spawning frequency

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