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Variability in the growth, feeding and condition of barramundi (Lates calcarifer Bloch) in a northern Australian coastal river and impoundment

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Russell, D.J., Thomson, F.E., Thuesen, P.A., Power, T.N. and Mayer, R. J. (2015) Variability in the growth, feeding and condition of barramundi (Lates calcarifer Bloch) in a northern Australian coastal river and impoundment. Marine and Freshwater Research, 66 (10). p. 928. ISSN 1323-1650


Article Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/mf13269


Lates calcarifer supports important fisheries throughout tropical Australia. Community-driven fish stocking has resulted in the creation of impoundment fisheries and supplemental stocking of selected wild riverine populations. Using predominantly tag-recapture methods, condition assessment and stomach flushing techniques, this study compared the growth of stocked and wild L. calcarifer in a tropical Australian river (Johnstone River) and stocked fish in a nearby impoundment (Lake Tinaroo). Growth of L. calcarifer in the Johnstone River appeared resource-limited, with juvenile fish in its lower freshwater reaches feeding mainly on small aytid shrimp and limited quantities of fish. Growth was probably greatest in estuarine and coastal areas than in the lower freshwater river. Fish in Lake Tinaroo, where prey availability was greater, grew faster than either wild or stocked fish in the lower freshwater areas of the Johnstone River. Growth of L. calcarifer was highly seasonal with marked declines in the cooler months. This was reflected in both stomach fullness and the percentage of fish with empty stomachs but the condition of L. calcarifer was similar across most sites. In areas where food resources appear stretched, adverse effects on resident L. calcarifer populations and their attendant prey species should be minimised through cessation of, or more conservative, stocking practices.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Animal Science
Keywords:condition factor feeding intensity habitat fidelity movement von Bertalanffy Trout salmo-trutta Wild brown trout Stocked barramundi Life-history Age Fishes Queensland Habitats Maturity Otoliths
Subjects:Animal culture > Feeds and feeding. Animal nutrition
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Aquaculture > Feeding
Aquaculture and Fisheries > Fisheries > Fishery research
Live Archive:13 Jun 2016 03:52
Last Modified:31 Jan 2023 02:09

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