Spatial and temporal variability in the condition of postlarval and juvenile Penaeus plebejus sampled from a population subjected to pilot releases
Ochwada-Doyle, F., Gray, C.A., Loneragan, N.R., Taylor, M.D. and Suthers, I.M., 2011. Spatial and temporal variability in the condition of postlarval and juvenile Penaeus plebejus sampled from a population subjected to pilot releases. Aquaculture Environment Interactions, 2(1): 15–25.
Stock enhancement occurs when marine animals are raised in a hatchery and released into the wild to increase catch rates for fisheries and/or increase population size. The success of this strategy can be limited by low survival, slow growth and poor body condition among released individuals and understanding the environmental characteristics associated with improved survival, growth or condition is important. We assessed changes in the body condition of released eastern king prawns (Penaeus plebejus Hess) within a lake in south-eastern Australia. Body condition was compared between different seasonal periods and different habitats. Condition was ~14% higher for individuals sampled in habitats lacking vegetation and ~16% higher for those sampled during autumn/winter compared to individuals sampled within vegetated habitat and during spring/summer respectively. Further experimental work on the factors investigated here is encouraged to increase our understanding of the environmental characteristics and mechanisms that lead to improved condition and thus persistence of stocked populations of P. plebejus.