Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

Life History and Reproductive Biology of the Gilgie, Cherax Quinquecarinatus, a Freshwater Crayfish Endemic to Southwestern Australia

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

This Article is currently unavailable for purchase.
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

Cover image Placeholder

Abstract The gilgie, Cherax quinquecarinatus, a freshwater crayfish endemic to southwestern Western Australia, occupies a wide range of permanent and temporary aquatic environments. Reproductive and population biology parameters were determined in Bull Creek, southwestern Western Australia. Crayfish were collected monthly from May 2002 to April 2003. The seasonal von Bertalanffy growth curve, fitted for the first 14 months of life for female and male C. quinquecarinatus, had respective curvature parameters (K) and asymptotic orbital carapace lengths OCL ∞ (CL ∞) of 0.29 and 59.6 (71.2) mm for females and 0.25 and 73.8 (87.0) mm for males, respectively. This equates to OCLs (CLs) of females and males at age 12 months of 14.7 (19.2) and 14.1 (18.4) mm, respectively. Cherax quinquecarinatus was found to mature at a relatively small size, with the length at which 50% of individuals mature L 50 for females and males being 18.8 and 24.5 mm OCL (24.1 and 30.9 mm CL), respectively. The majority of C. quinquecarinatus thus first spawned at the end of their second year of life. The potential (ovarian) and pleopodal fecundities of C. quinquecarinatus were relatively low compared to other freshwater crayfish species of similar size, being 81.7 (± 5.93 S.E.) and 77.1 (± 13.76 S.E.), respectively. Cherax quinquecarinatus underwent an extended spawning period, from late winter to late summer (i.e., August to February), with three spawning events facilitated by short brood and rapid gonadal recovery periods, traits consistent with other crayfish species able to exist in temporary environments. Estimates of total mortality (Z) were relatively high at 2.34 and 1.95/year based on age-converted catch curves for females and males, respectively, with a considerable proportion of this attributed to fishing mortality (exploitation rates of 0.76 and 0.75 for females and males, respectively). Cherax quinquecarinatus underwent a life-history strategy that showed characteristics of both a summer (r- strategist) and winter (K-strategist) brooder.

Affiliations: 1: Centre for Fish and Fisheries Research, Murdoch University, South St., Murdoch, Western Australia 6150, Australia (corresponding author (SJB):; others: (DLM); (HSG)


Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

1. Austin C. M. 1998 "Intraspecific variation in clutch and brood size and rate of development in the yabby, Cherax destructor (Decapoda: Parastacidae)." Aquaculture Vol 167 147 159
2. Austin C. M. , Knott B. 1996 "Systematics of the freshwater crayfish genus Cherax Erichson (Decapoda: Parastacidae) in south-western Australia: electrophoretic, morphological and habitat variation." Australian Journal of Zoology Vol 44 223 258
3. Austin C. M. , Meewan M. 1999 "A preliminary study of primary sex ratios in the freshwater crayfish, Cherax destructor Clark." Aquaculture Vol 174 43 50
4. Austin C. M. , Ryan S. G. 2002 "Allozyme evidence for a new species of freshwater crayfish of the genus Cherax Erichson (Decapoda: Parastacidae) from the south-west of Western Australia." Invertebrate Systematics Vol 16 357 367
5. Beatty S. J. , Morgan D. L. , Gill H. S. 2003 "The reproductive biology of the large freshwater crayfish Cherax cainii in south-western Australia." Marine and Freshwater Research Vol 54 597 608
6. Beverton R. J H. , Holt S. J. 1957 "On the Dynamics of Exploited Fish Populations." Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Fisheries Investigations, Series 2 (19), United Kingdom. 533 pp
7. Bunn S. E. , Davies P. M. 1990 "Why is the stream fauna of south-western Australia so impoverished?." Hydrobiologia Vol 194 169 176
8. Cerrato R. M. 1990 "Interpretable statistical tests for growth comparisons using parameters in the von Bertalanffy equation." Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences Vol 47 1416 1426
9. Corey S. 1987 "Comparative fecundity of four species of crayfish in southwestern Ontario, Canada (Decapoda, Astacidea)." Crustaceana Vol 52 276 286
10. Coy N. J. 1979 "Freshwater Fishing in South-West Australia." Jabiru Books, Perth, Western Australia. 215 pp
11. Crandall K. A. , Fetzner J. W. Jr. , Lawler S. H. , Kinnersley M. , Austin C. M. 1999 "Phylogenetic relationships among the Australian and New Zealand genera of freshwater crayfishes (Decapoda: Parastacidae)." Australian Journal of Zoology Vol 47 199 214
12. de Lestang S. , Hall N. , Potter I. C. 2003 "Changes in density, age composition, and growth rate of Portunus pelagicus in a large embayment in which fishing pressures and environmental conditions have been altered." Journal of Crustacean Biology Vol 23 908 919
13. Eversole A. G. , Mazlum Y. , Fontenot Q. C. , Turker H. 2002 "Evaluation of a non-invasive technique for predicting reproductive success in white river crayfish." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 13 303 308
14. Fotedar R. K K. , Knott B. , Evans L. H. 1999 "Effect of a diet supplemented with cod liver oil and sunflower oil on growth, survival and condition indices of juvenile Cherax tenuimanus (Smith)." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 12 478 493
15. Gutirrez-Yurrita P. J. , Latournerie-Cervera J. R. 1999 "Ecological features of Procambarus digueti and Procambarus bouvieri (Cambaridae), two endemic crayfish species of Mexico." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 12 605 619
16. Gutirrez-Yurrita P. J. , Montes C. 1999 "Bioenergetics and phenology of reproduction of the introduced red swamp crayfish, Procambarus clarkii, in Donana National Park, Spain, and implications for species management." Freshwater Biology Vol 42 561 574
17. Hamr P. 2002 "Orconectes." Pp. 585608 in D. M. Holdich, ed. Biology of Freshwater Crayfish. Blackwell Science, Oxford, England
18. Hamr P. , Richardson A. 1994 "Life history of Parastacoides tasmanicus tasmanicus Clark, a burrowing freshwater crayfish from south-western Tasmania." Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research Vol 45 455 470
19. Hanumara R. C. , Hoenig N. A. 1987 "An empirical comparison of a fit of linear and non-linear models for seasonal growth in fish." Fisheries Research Vol 5 351 381
20. Honan J. A. , Mitchell B. D. 1995a "Reproduction of Euastacus bispinosus Clark (Decapoda: Parastacidae), and trends in the reproductive characteristics of freshwater crayfish." Marine and Freshwater Research Vol 46 485 499
21. Honan J. A. , Mitchell B. D. 1995b "Catch characteristics of the large freshwater crayfish, Eustacus bispinosus Clark (Decapoda: Parastacidae), and implications for management." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 10 57 69
22. Horwitz P. , Adams M. 2000 "The systematics, biogeography and conservation status of species in the freshwater crayfish genus Engaewa Riek (Decapoda: Parastacidae) from south-western Australia." Invertebrate Taxonomy Vol 14 655 680
23. Huner J. V. 1988 "Procambarus in North America and elsewhere." Pp. 239261 in D. M. Holdich and R. S. Lowery, eds. Freshwater Crayfish: Biology, Management and Exploitation. Chapman and Hall, London
24. Huner J. V. 2002 "Procambarus." Pp. 541584 in D. M. Holdich, ed. Biology of Freshwater Crayfish. Blackwell Science, Oxford, England
25. King M. 1995 "Fisheries Biology, Assessment and Management." Fishing News Books, Oxford, England. 341 pp
26. Lewis S. D. 2002 "Pacifastacus." Pp. 511540 in D. M. Holdich, ed. Biology of Freshwater Crayfish. Blackwell Science, Oxford, England
27. Lindqvist O. V. , Huner J. V. , Henttonen P. , Kononen H. 1999 "A comparison of life history strategies and energy reserves of crayfishes occupying permanent and temporary water bodies." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 12 449 461
28. MacArthur R. H. , Wilson E. O. 1967 "The Theory of Island Biogeography." Princeton University Press, U.S.A
29. McRae T. G. , Mitchell B. D. 1995 "Studies on ovarian development in the yabby, Cherax albidus." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 10 521 531
30. Meagher S. J. 1974 "The food resources of the Aborigines of the south-west of Western Australia." Records of the Western Australian Museum Vol 3 1 14 65
31. Mitchell B. D. , Collins R. O. 1989 "Development of field-scale intensive culture techniques for the commercial production of the yabby (Cherax destructor/albidus)." Centre for Aquatic Science, Warnambool Institute of Advanced Education, Warnambool, Victoria, Australia, Report 89(1): 1253
32. Momot W. T. 1995 "Redefining the role of freshwater crayfish in aquatic ecosystems." Reviews in Fisheries Science Vol 3 33 63
33. Morgan D. L. , Gill H. S. , Potter I. C. 1998 "Distribution, Identification and Biology of Freshwater Fishes in South-Western Australia." Records of the Western Australian Museum Supplement No. 56. 97 pp
34. Morgan D. L. , Gill H. S. , Potter I. C. 2000 "Age composition, growth and reproductive biology of the salamanderfish Lepidogalaxias salamandroides: a re-examination." Environmental Biology of Fishes Vol 57 191 204
35. Morgan G. E. , Momot W. T. 1988 "Exploitation of Orconectes virilis in northern climates: complementarity of management options with self-regulatory life history strategies." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 7 69 80
36. Morrissy N. M. 1970 "Spawning of marron, Cherax tenuimanus (Smith) in Western Australia." Fisheries Research Bulletin of Western Australia Vol 112 1 55
37. Morrissy N. M. 1975 "Spawning variation and its relationship to growth rate and density in the marron, Cherax tenuimanus (Smith)." Fisheries Research Bulletin of Western Australia Vol 16 1 32
38. Muck J. A. , Rabeni C. F. , Distefano R. J. 2002 "Life-history characteristics of the crayfish Orconectes ozarkae in a Missouri Ozark stream." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 13 359 370
39. Noblitt S. B. , Payne J. F. 1995 "A comparative study of selected chemical aspects of the eggs of the crayfish Procambarus clarkii (Girard, 1852) and P. zonangulus Hobbs and Hobbs, 1990 (Decapoda, Cambaridae)." Crustaceana Vol 68 695 704
40. Noblitt S. B. , Payne J. F. , Delong M. 1995 "A comparative study of selected physical aspects of the eggs of the crayfish Procambarus clarkii (Girard, 1852) and P. zonangulus Hobbs and Hobbs, 1990 (Decapoda, Cambaridae)." Crustaceana Vol 68 575 582
41. Pauly D. 1980 "On the interrelationship between natural mortality, growth parameters and mean environmental temperature in 175 fish stocks." Journal du Conseil Vol 39 175 192
42. Pauly D. 1983 "Length-converted catch curves: a powerful tool for fisheries research in the tropics (part 1)." Fishbyte Vol 1 9 13
43. Pianka E. R. 1970 "On r and K selection." American Naturalist Vol 104 592 597
44. Pursiainen M. , Saarela M. , Westman K. 1988 "The reproductivity of female noble crayfish Astacus astacus in a northern oligotrophic lake." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 7 99 105
45. Quinn T. J. II. , Deriso R. S. 1999 "Quantitative Fish Dynamics." Oxford, U.K. 542 pp
46. Rabeni C. F. , Gossett M. , McClendon D. D. 1995 "Trophic ecology of an Ozark stream." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 10 163 173
47. Reynolds J. D. 2002 "Growth and reproduction." Pp. 152184 in D. M. Holdich, ed. Biology of Freshwater Crayfish. Blackwell Science, Oxford, England
48. Ricker W. E. 1975 "Computation and Interpretation of Biological Statistics of Fish Populations." Fisheries Research Board of Canada Bulletin 191. 382 pp
49. Riek E. F. 1967 "The freshwater crayfish of Western Australia." Australian Journal of Zoology Vol 15 103 121
50. Riek E. F. 1969 "The Australian freshwater crayfish (Crustacea: Decapoda: Parastacidae), with the description of new species." Australian Journal of Zoology Vol 17 855 918
51. Saila S. B. , Recksieck C. W. , Prager M. H. 1988 "Basic Fishery Science Programs: A Compendium of Microcomputer Programs and Manual of Operation." Elsevier, Amsterdam, Netherlands. 230 pp
52. Schnute J. , Fournier D. A. 1980 "A new approach to length-frequency analysis: growth structure." Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences Vol 37 1337 1351
53. Sokal A. 1988 "The Australian yabby." Pp. 401426 in D. M. Holdich, ed. Biology of Freshwater Crayfish. Blackwell Science, Oxford, England
54. Taugbol T. , Skurdal J. , Fjeld E. 1988 "Maturity and fecundity of Astacus astacus females in Norway." Freshwater Crayfish Vol 7 107 114
55. Whiting A. S. , Lawler S. H. , Horwitz P. , Crandall K. A. 2000 "Biogeographic regionalization of Australia: assigning conservation priorities based on endemic freshwater crayfish phylogenetics." Animal Conservation Vol 3 155 163

Article metrics loading...



Can't access your account?
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation