A new ageing method for eggs of fish species with daily spawning synchronicity

M Bernal, David Louis Borchers, L Valdes, A Lago de Lanzos, Stephen Terrence Buckland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


A new method for ageing staged eggs of fish is presented. The method is intended for species that show spawning synchronicity and for which the egg phase can be classified into development stages, each of which lasts less than a day, such as sardines and anchovies. It combines biological information on the daily frequency of spawning and egg development rates, via a probabilistic resampling method. A general methodology that allows the use of models of daily spawning frequency and egg development as a function of temperature is provided and applied to sardine egg data from three surveys in northern Spain. Unlike previous ageing methods, the proposed method allows for the variability of egg ages in a way that reflects the extent of the assumed daily spawning period, and estimates of the uncertainty in the stage-to-age conversion can be obtained. These estimates of uncertainty can be incorporated into subsequent analyses that involve age as a covariate, such as in the daily egg production method (DEPM), thus allowing more reliable estimates of the variance of egg production.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2330-2340
Number of pages11
JournalCanadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2001




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