Age, growth and population characteristics of the giant snake eel, ophichthus rex, in the gulf of mexico
Giant snake eels, Ophichthus rex, were collected from the northern Gulf of Mexico employing commercial long-lining techniques. Samples of approximately 30 eels were taken monthly for 9 of the 12 months between March 1988 and February 1989. Age and growth parameters were estimated using sectioned otoliths read under a compound microscope. Age class on total length correlations and back-calculated lengths were computed. Periodicity of ring formation was evaluated using marginal increment analysis. A von Bertalanffy growth function equation was also determined. Eels captured ranged in length from 83.0 cm to 212.0 cm and in age from age class 4 to 30. The sex ratio was in favor of females by a factor of 5.6:1. Regression of total length on age class yielded an r2- value of 0.53. Some age classes showed substantial variation in minimum and maximum total lengths. Marginal increment analysis was equivocal; however, it suggested that rings were laid down twice annually, once in middle summer to early fall and again in late winter to early spring.
Snelson, Franklin F.
Master of Science (M.S.)
College of Arts and Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Arts and Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic; Dissertations, Academic -- Arts and Sciences
Clark, Steven Troy, "Age, growth and population characteristics of the giant snake eel, ophichthus rex, in the gulf of mexico" (1989). Retrospective Theses and Dissertations. 4123.