Growth and maturity of salmon sharks (Lamna ditropis) in the eastern and western North Pacific, and comments on back-calculation methods

Issue:

Author(s): 
Goldman, Kenneth J., and John A. Musick
Cover date: 
2006
Pages: 
278–292
Abstract: 

Age and growth estimates for salmon sharks (Lamna ditropis) in the eastern North Pacific were derived from 182 vertebral centra collected from sharks ranging in length from 62.2 to 213.4 cm precaudal length (PCL) and compared to previously published age and growth data for salmon sharks in the western North Pacific. Eastern North Pacific female and male salmon sharks were aged up to 20 and 17 years, respectively. Relative marginal increment (RMI) analysis showed that postnatal rings form annually between January and March. Von Bertalanffy growth parameters derived from vertebral length-at-age data are L∞ =207.4 cm PCL, k=0.17/yr, and t0=−2.3 years for females (n=166), and L∞ =182.8 cm PCL, k=0.23/yr , and t0=−1.9 years for males (n=16). Age at maturity was estimated to range from six to nine years for females (median precaudal length of 164.7 cm PCL) and from three to five years old for males (median precaudal length of 124.0 cm PCL). Weight-length relationships for females and males in the eastern North Pacific are W=8.2 × 10_05 ×L2.759 (r2=0.99) and W=3.2 × 10–06 × L3.383 (r2=0.99), respectively. Our results show that female and male salmon sharks in the eastern North Pacific possess a faster growth rate, reach sexual maturity earlier, and attain greater weight-at-length than their same-sex counterparts living in the western North Pacific.