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Sex ratio, spawning season and size at maturity of red bandfish in the western Aegean Sea


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The red bandfish Cepola rubescens is characterized by a normal gonochoristic sexual organization. The overall male: female ratio did not differ significantly (x2=4.57, P<0.05) from the theoretical 1: 1. However, the male: female ratio differed with season and length class and these differences are most probably related to sexual differences in growth rate, natural mortality rate and energetic cost of reproduction. Red bandfish spawns over an extended period, from late spring to mid autumn, with larger females spawning earlier than smaller ones. Males reach maturity at a larger total length, 299 mm, and age, 2.6 years, than females, 219 mm and 1.9 years respectively, a fact most probably indicating the existence of social structure in red bandfish. Finally, red bandfish matures at a comparatively smaller length and age than other fish species.

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