Age and growth of the small red scorpionfish, Scorpaena notata Rafinesque, 1810, based on whole and sectioned otolith readings

  • Giuseppe Scarcella
  • Mario La Mesa
  • Fabio Grati
  • Piero Polidori


Age and growth of Scorpaena notata from the northern Adriatic Sea were investigated by annual growth increment counts (annuli). Overall, age and growth were estimated from 538 specimens of S. notata ranging between 47 and 199 mm TL. No clear sexual dimorphism in size was observed. Annual deposition of annuli and location of the first annulus have been validated by edge analysis and daily growth increment counts, respectively. The estimated age range was between 0–16 years for female and 0–14 years for males. The estimated values of Von Bertalanffy asymptotic length \( {{\text{L}}_{\infty }} \) (cm) and k (years−1) were 16.3 and 0.46 for males and 15.6 and 0.35 for females. Thus, males of S. notata appeared to attain a slightly larger size at faster rate than females. The growth performance index ranged between 1.9 and 2.1, which is in the middle of the range observed in other scorpaenids. Comparing ageing data of S. notata with other Mediterranean scorpaenids, a direct relationship between fish size and growth performance was observed.


Adriatic Sea Age and growth Scorpaenidae Scorpaena notata 



We thank the staffs of Marine Environment Management Unit and Population Dynamic Unit of ISMAR-CNR Ancona who respectively contributed to the sample collection and otoliths processing. We thank also Lesley Farley for the English revision of the text and two anonymous referees for their suggestions and criticism that clearly improved an earlier version of this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giuseppe Scarcella
    • 1
  • Mario La Mesa
    • 1
  • Fabio Grati
    • 1
  • Piero Polidori
    • 1
  1. 1.Istituto di Scienze MarineConsiglio Nazionale delle RicercheAnconaItaly

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