Fisheries Science

, Volume 83, Issue 3, pp 373–382 | Cite as

Winter longitudinal variation in the body size of larval fishes in the Seto Inland Sea, Japan

  • Yuya Shigematsu
  • Yuichiro Ochi
  • Shuhei Yamaguchi
  • Kazumitsu Nakaguchi
  • Yoichi Sakai
  • Jun-ya Shibata
  • Wataru Nishijima
  • Takeshi Tomiyama
Original Article Biology


This study revealed the spatial variation in abundance and body size of larval fishes in the Seto Inland Sea, Japan, in January 2014 and 2015. Fish larvae were collected by a 1.3-m-diameter ring net towed at the surface and at 10-m depth at 21 stations. The most dominant species was the sandlance Ammodytes japonicus, constituting 82% of total larval fish caught. The body size of A. japonicus was greater [ca. 9 mm total length (TL) in 2014] in eastern areas than in western areas (ca. 5 mm TL in 2014). This trend was also observed in rockfishes (Sebastiscus marmoratus and Sebastes inermis species complex), suggesting a common phenomenon in this region. Because the water temperature was lower in eastern areas, it is likely that the longitudinal differences in larval body size are attributable to earlier spawning in eastern areas caused by different temperature conditions.


Oceanographic condition Hatching timing Larval growth Spawning season 



We are grateful to Dr. H. Hashimoto and Y. Yamada for motivating this study by their preliminary research. We thank staff of the training and research vessel Toyoshiomaru and members of the Laboratory of Biology of Aquatic Resources, Hiroshima University, for their support in field sampling. We also thank Dr. Y. Kurita and anonymous reviewers for their critical comments on the manuscript. This work was partly supported by the Environment Research and Technology Development Fund (S-13) granted by the Ministry of the Environment, Japan.

Supplementary material

12562_2017_1076_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (130 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 129 kb)


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Copyright information

© Japanese Society of Fisheries Science 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graduate School of Biosphere ScienceHiroshima UniversityHigashi-HiroshimaJapan
  2. 2.Faculty of Applied Biological ScienceHiroshima UniversityHigashi-HiroshimaJapan
  3. 3.Environmental Research and Management CenterHiroshima UniversityHigashi-HiroshimaJapan

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