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Sellas A.B.,California Academy of Sciences | Bassos-Hull K.,Center for Shark Research | Perez-Jimenez J.C.,Laboratorio Of Pesquerias Artesanales | Angulo-Valdes J.A.,University of Habana | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Heredity | Year: 2015

Few studies have reported on the fine-scale population genetics of batoid species in the Atlantic basin. Here, we investigate the genetic diversity and population structure of the spotted eagle ray, Aetobatus narinari, sampled in the northeastern and southwestern parts of the Gulf of Mexico and in the northwestern Caribbean Sea. Samples were collected from 286 individuals sampled across 3 geographic localities. Estimates of divergence based on the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene and 10 nuclear microsatellite loci reveal weak but significant genetic structure among A. narinari populations in this region. Analysis of molecular variance estimates based on both marker types indicate significant differentiation between Florida and Mexico populations, while comparisons with Cuba suggest high levels of gene flow with rays from both Mexico and Florida. Conflicting results were found from the different marker types when sexes were analyzed separately underscoring the importance of applying multiple marker types when making inferences about population structure and sex-biased dispersal. Results from Bayesian clustering analyses suggest rays may be migrating south out of the Gulf of Mexico and into the northwestern Caribbean Sea. Given the impacts of fisheries on this species, coupled with the lack of population genetic data available, these findings offer valuable information to aid with conservation management strategies. © 2015 © The American Genetic Association 2015. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com. Source

Perez-Jimenez J.C.,Laboratorio Of Pesquerias Artesanales | Sosa-Nishizaki O.,CICESE
Bulletin of Marine Science | Year: 2010

We estimated the reproductive parameters needed for assessment of the commercially exploited populations of the grey smoothhound Mustelus californicus (Gill, 1864) and the sicklefin smoothhound Mustelus lunulatus (Jordan and Gilbert, 1883) from the northern Gulf of California. Results indicated that females of M. californicus and M. lunulatus reproduce annually; with a gestation of approximately 11 mo (gestation and vitellogenesis were concurrent). Females and males of M. californicus matured at 862 and 728 mm total length (TL), respectively, and females and males of M. lunulatus matured at 1032 and 915 mm TL, respectively. A linear relationship between maternal TL and litter size was estimated for both species. Litter sizes were 7-16 for M. californicus and 6-19 for M. lunulatus. All near-term gravid and postpartum females of both species were caught in the Biosphere Reserve of the Upper Gulf of California and Colorado River Delta (the northernmost region of the gulf) between February and June, which suggests that this area is a pupping ground for both species. © 2010 Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science of the University of Miami. Source

Cuevas-Zimbron E.,Laboratorio Of Pesquerias Artesanales | Perez-Jimenez J.C.,Laboratorio Of Pesquerias Artesanales | Mendez-Loeza I.,Laboratorio Of Pesquerias Artesanales
Fisheries Science | Year: 2011

The target fishery for the spotted eagle ray Aetobatus narinari in the southern Gulf of Mexico is little known. The landings of four small-scale vessels at two fishing localities were sampled and fishermen were interviewed in 2009. Rays landed at Campeche [mean ± standard deviation (SD) 1204 ± 225. 3 mm disc width (DW)], fished at 30-50 km from the shore, were larger than rays landed at Seybaplaya (924 ± 206. 5 mm DW), fished at 8-15 km from the shore. Ray catches were male biased off Campeche and female biased off Seybaplaya. Catch rate off Campeche was 6. 6 (±4. 9) rays per vessel trip and off Seybaplaya was 3. 0 (±2. 9) rays per vessel trip. Fishermen stated that catches of A. narinari are positively influenced by winter cold fronts, turbidity, low sea temperature, and new moon phase, and negatively influenced by the presence of cownose rays Rhinoptera bonasus. Spatial variation in size composition, and sex and maturity ratios of A. narinari were evident between sites. Catch rates of A. narinari varied with individual fisherman and seasonally between months with winter cold fronts versus warmer months. Fishermen reported a general decline in catches of A. narinari over recent decades in this region. © 2011 The Japanese Society of Fisheries Science. Source

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