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The Use of Otolith Morphometrics in Determining the Size and Species Identification of Eight Mullets (Mugiliformes: Mugilidae) from Malaysia

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Sara Marsham


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Sagittal otolith morphometric measurements from Malaysian Mugilidae species were selected to investigate their possible role in species identification, due to the Mugilidae species' morphological similarities, and age determination. Fish standard length (cm), otolith length (mu m), width (mu m) and mass (g) measurements were taken from eight species: Chelon macrolepis, C. melinopterus, C. subviridis, Ellochelon vaigiensis, Moolgarda cunnesius, M. seheli, Mugil cephalus and Valamugil engeli. Otolith aspect ratio, O-AS (otolith length divided by width), was calculated and compared between species. The four homogenous groups based on their OAS were C. melinopterus (mean=1.65) and V. engeli (1.66) and M. cunnesius (1.89) and E. vaigiensis (1.89); M. seheli (2.08), C. macrolepis (2.14) and M. cephalus (2.17); and the latter two with C. subviridis (2.43). The relationships between fish standard length and otolith length/mass showed positive correlations for both, with otolith length providing the stronger correlation (r(s) = 0.897, P < 0.001) than otolith mass (r(s) = 0.795, P < 0.001). It is concluded that the more morphologically similar species have similar otolith aspect ratios, related to head shape; however, otolith shape is also affected by a variety of other environmental factors that have to be taken account of.

Publication metadata

Author(s): See M, Marsham S, Chang CW, Chong VC, Sasekumar A, Dhillon SK, Loh KH

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Sains Malaysiana

Year: 2016

Volume: 45

Issue: 5

Pages: 735-743

Print publication date: 01/05/2016

Acceptance date: 01/01/1900

ISSN (print): 0126-6039

Publisher: National University of Malaysia Press



Funder referenceFunder name
RG191-12SUSUniversity of Malaya Research Grant (UMRG) from the University of Malaya