Transport and survival processes of eggs and larvae of jack mackerel Trachurus japonicus in the East China Sea

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Abstract

ABSTRACT:  Recent surveys showed substantial aggregation of larvae of jack mackerel in the southern East China Sea, indicating intensive spawning grounds near Taiwan. A numerical model was applied to investigate transport and survival processes of eggs and larvae of jack mackerel from the spawning area to the nurseries. The results show that: (i) the distributions of larvae simulated by the model agreed well with those obtained by field survey; (ii) the stock of jack mackerel in the Sea of Japan is composed of both groups from north of Taiwan and from the western coast of Kyushu. It takes more than two months for the former to reach the Sea of Japan, while it is within 40 days for the latter; and (iii) large proportions of the eggs and larvae spawned off the north of Taiwan are transported rapidly to the Pacific side of Kyushu by the Kuroshio Current, and the rest slowly to the east or north-east along the continental slope in the East China Sea. In contrast to the larval flux, survivors are more abundant in the northern East China Sea than in the Pacific Ocean, indicating that survival in the northern East China Sea would determine the jack mackerel stock in Japan.

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