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Population growth, trophic level, and reproductive biology of two congeneric archer fishes (Toxotes chatareus, Hamilton 1822 and Toxotes jaculatrix, Pallas 1767) inhabiting Malaysian coastal waters

Abstract

Population growth, trophic level, and some aspects of reproductive biology of two congeneric archer fish species, Toxotes chatareus and Toxotes jaculatrix, collected from Johor coastal waters, Malaysia, were studied. Growth pattern by length-weight relationship (W=aL b) for the sexes differed, and exhibited positive allometric growth (male, female and combined sexes of T. chatareus; female and combined sexes of T. jaculatrix) and isometric growth (male samples of T. jaculatrix only). Trophic levels of both species were analyzed based on 128 specimens. The results show that, in both species, crustaceans and insects were the most abundant prey items, and among crustaceans the red clawed crab Sesarma bidens and Formicidae family insects were the most represented taxa. The estimated mean trophic levels for T. chatareus and T. jaculatrix were 3.422±0.009 and 3.420±0.020, respectively, indicating that they are largely carnivores. Fecundity of T. chatareus ranged from 38 354 to 147 185 eggs for females with total length ranging from 14.5 to 22.5 cm and total body weight from 48.7 to 270.2 g, and T. jaculatrix 25 251 to 150 456 eggs for females with total length ranging from 12.2 to 23.0 cm and total body weight from 25.7 to 275.0 g. Differences in values of gonadosomatic and hepatosomatic indexes calculated for both species in this study may have resulted from uneven sample size ranges.

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Correspondence to A. G. Mazlan.

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Project supported by the Malaysia government through UKM-Science Fund (No. 04-01-02-SF0124) and the fellowship of Skim Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (No. UKM-OUP-FST-2008)

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Simon, K.D., Bakar, Y., Samat, A. et al. Population growth, trophic level, and reproductive biology of two congeneric archer fishes (Toxotes chatareus, Hamilton 1822 and Toxotes jaculatrix, Pallas 1767) inhabiting Malaysian coastal waters. J. Zhejiang Univ. Sci. B 10, 902 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1631/jzus.B0920173

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Key words

  • Archer fish
  • Toxotidae
  • Mangrove
  • Estuary
  • Predator
  • Growth
  • Reproduction

CLC number

  • S9