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Population structure, morphometric analysis and reproductive biology of Portunus sanguinolentus (Herbst, 1783) (Decapoda: Brachyura: Portunidae) in Honghai Bay, South China Sea

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Portunus sanguinolentus (Herbst, 1783) is commercially important in China, but its yields have declined in recent years. Here, the morphometric characteristics and organ indices are analysed to obtain baseline information about the population structure, sexual maturity, and fecundity of this species. Specimens were collected monthly from the waters of Honghai Bay, off the South China Sea. A 1.26:1 male:female sex ratio was recorded. Male crabs reached sexual maturity at a carapace width (CW) of 74-87 mm, while this CW range was 76-92 mm for females. Fifty percent of males and females were mature at a CW of 76.4 and 82.2 mm, respectively. Spawning peaked in February (53.4%), while the smallest and largest berried female crabs were 77.1 mm CW and 139.6 mm CW, respectively. A total of 58,600 to 565,000 eggs was attached to the pleopods of berried females, with female fecundity being significantly correlated to CW. The assimilated information is expected to help improve the sustainability of this crab fishery in China.

Affiliations: 1: 1Key Laboratory of Tropical Marine Bio-resources and Ecology, South China Sea Institute of Oceanology, Guangzhou 510301, P.R. China; 2: 3Guangdong Huilai No. 2 Middle School, Jieyang 515223, P.R. China


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