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Keywords:

  • Pagrus auratus;
  • recruitment;
  • temperature;
  • year class strength

ABSTRACT

The abundance of 1+ snapper (Pagrus auratus) was estimated by trawl surveys and was found to vary 17-fold over 7 years. There was a strong positive correlation between year class strength and autumn (April-June) sea surface temperature during the 0+ year, with the latter explaining 94% of the variability in year class strength. The underlying mechanism is unknown, but three hypotheses relating snapper growth and survival to temperature are discussed. The strengths of the 1991 and 1992 year classes are predicted to be below average and extremely weak, respectively.