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Age and size at sexual maturity of the smooth skate Malacoraja senta from the western Gulf of Maine

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Age and size at sexual maturity was determined for 185 male and 96 female smooth skates Malacoraja senta (ranging in size from 370 to 680 mm total length LT), collected from the western Gulf of Maine. Maturity ogives for males, based on clasper length, testis mass and the proportion of mature spermatocysts in the testes, suggest that 50% maturity occurs between 9 and 10 years and 560 mm LT. Maturity ogives for females, based on ovary mass, shell-gland mass and maximum follicle size, suggest that 50% maturity occurs at age 9 years and 540 mm LT.

Keywords: Rajidae; fishery management; life history; reproductive biology

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: University of New England, Marine Science Center, 11 Hills Beach Rd, Biddeford, ME 04005, U.S.A. 2: University of New Hampshire, Department of Molecular, Cellular and Biomedical Sciences, Kendall Hall, 129 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824, U.S.A. 3: USDOC/NOAA/NMFS, 28 Tarzwell Drive, Narragansett, RI 02882, U.S.A.

Publication date: 2009-12-01

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