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A comparison of the maturation and growth of female flathead sole in the central Gulf of Alaska and south‐eastern Bering Sea

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Abstract:

Female flathead sole Hippoglossoides elassodon maturity appears not to be area dependent since the total length (LT) at which 50% were mature (LT50) was similar for the central Gulf of Alaska (333 mm) and south‐eastern Bering Sea (320 mm) areas. Likewise the age at which 50% were mature (A50) was similar in the south‐eastern Bering Sea (9·7 years) and central Gulf of Alaska (8·7 years). The timing of female flathead sole spawning may also be similar between areas. Batch or serial spawning was indicated for flathead sole. Female flathead sole grew at a similar rate in both the Gulf of Alaska and Bering Sea. In contrast, males grew faster in the Bering Sea than in the Gulf of Alaska. Males grew more slowly than females in both areas after 5 years of age, and reached a smaller maximum LT. The growth of both sexes was similar during 1993 and 1996 in the Gulf of Alaska.

Keywords: age‐and length‐at‐maturity; growth; spawning

Document Type: Regular Paper

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1095-8649.2004.00356.x

Affiliations: Resource Assessment and Conservation Engineering Division, Alaska Fisheries Science Center, National Marine Fisheries Service, NOAA, 7600 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle, Washington 98 115-0010, U.S.A.

Publication date: April 1, 2004

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