Article Title

Estimates of Age, Growth, and Settlement from Otoliths of Young-of-the-Year Kelp Bass (Paralabrax clathratus)





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Settled young-of-the-year (YOY) and older juvenile kelp bass {Par- alabrax clathratus) were collected off the coast of southern California during the summers of 1989 and 1990. Daily rings on the sagittae of settled YOY kelp bass were used to determine age, estimate growth, and construct ring width profiles for each fish. Laboratory-reared larvae revealed that ring deposition began on the third day after hatching, and confirmed the daily periodicity of ring deposition. The combined 1989-90 growth curve could be described as a linear regression with the equation (length (mm)) = 14.67 + 1 .69(age(days)) (r = .96), resulting in an average daily growth of 0.59 mm/day for the first 90 days of life. Back- calculated spawn dates suggested a possible lunar periodicity around the full moon. Settlement checks and otolith ring widths were used to determine the time of settlement and explore the possibility of delayed settlement in this species. The average age-at-settlement was calculated to be 30 days, with a range of 25-36 days. Only a single case of delayed settlement was evident from the increment- width profiles of 22 fish.