Alternate Title

Ichthyoplankton of the Central Venezuelan Coast: Composition, Abundance and Seasonality


Monthly nocturnal samples of fish eggs and larvae were collected at five in-shore stations (10m depth) at Punta Moron, over a 13 month period. A total of 31,041 larvae were collected representing 41 larvae types in 31 families. The Engraulidae dominated the samples comprising 89.0% of the total larval catch; the Gobiidae and Clupeidae ranked second (4.2% of the catch) and third (2.7%) respectively. No major rank order differences in the taxonomic composition of the larval catches from the five stations were noted. The ten most abundant families were represented at all stations. Ecological notes as well as larval size ranges are presented for these families. The density of fish eggs and larvae was consistently higher in nocturnal samples than in three sets of diurnal samples taken from the same stations. No significant correlations were detected between water temperature and mean number of kinds of larvae, mean egg density and mean larval density. Fish egg density exhibited peaks in November, May and August. The larvae of the most abundant families had irregular pulses in abundance with a major peak in July. Larvae representing the families Carangidae, Gerreidae and Elapidae were markedly seasonal in occurrence.

This document is currently not available here.