Population characteristics of green tiger prawns, Penaeus semisulcatus, in Kuwait waters prior to the Gulf War

Abstract

Monthly length-frequency data of green tiger prawns from April 1985 to August 1990 were analyzed to estimate the von Bertalanffy growth curves and related parameters. The mean asymptotic carapace lengths (L ) and growth constants (K) over 5 seasons were 36.6 mm and 1.6 yr−1 for males and 51.2 mm and 1.7 yr−1 for females, respectively. Annual total mortality rates (Z) from 1985/86 to 1989/90 ranged from 2.7 to 6.5 yr−1 for males and from 2.8 to 6.8 yr−1 1 for females. The mean exploitation rates calculated using the mean natural mortality rates (M) of 2.5 yr−1 for males and 2.4 yr−1 for females showed that the male green tiger prawns in Kuwait waters were under exploited, whereas the catch of females was very close to the sustainable yield. Chi-square tests indicated that the sex ratio was close to one for adults (CL ≽ 26 mm), but significantly favoured males for recruits (CL < 26 mm). A major recruitment was detected from June/July in all seasons and a minor recruitment in some seasons in August/September. The relative yield-per-recruit (Y'/R) reached the optimum at the length-at-first capture (L c) of 25 mm CL for males, and increased as L c increased for females. The observed mean L c, values were 23.4 mm for both males and females. The Y'/R under the current exploitation level is close to the maximum sustainable yield for females, but lower for males. More fishing effort could be exerted to exploit males, but doing so may not be biologically or commercially possible with current trawling practices.

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Mohammed, H.M.A., Bishop, J.M. & Xu, X. Population characteristics of green tiger prawns, Penaeus semisulcatus, in Kuwait waters prior to the Gulf War. Hydrobiologia 337, 37–47 (1996). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00028505

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Key words

  • exploitation rate
  • recruitment
  • mortality
  • growth
  • sex ratios