[Coral-List] age of the new blue marlin World record !!!

David Shafer shafer at hawaii.edu
Fri Oct 31 17:17:20 EST 2003


According to information in fishbase, the largest reported Makaira  
mazara  (Jordan & Snyder, 1901) is 5 m TL (www.fishbase.com: Allen, 
G.R. and R.C. Steene, 1988 Fishes of Christmas Island Indian Ocean. 
Christmas Island Natural History Association, Christmas Island, Indian 
Ocean, 6798, Australia. 197 p.); max. published weight: 906 kg; max. 
reported age: 28 years.  The blue marlin caught in the ‘titanesque’ 
fight is a good half meter smaller, and perhaps younger.

The best way to determine the age of blue marlin is to count annual 
increments on the sagittal otolith.  You might read: Hill, K.T., G.M. 
Cailliet and R.L. Radtke, 1989 A comparative analysis of growth zones 
in four calcified structures of Pacific blue marlin, Makaira nigricans. 
Fish. Bull. 87:829-843.  Makaira nigricans is a similar species, if not 
the same species. 

A more interesting number to seek for the prize fish might be its 
potential remaining lifetime fecundity (total egg production) if it 
were tagged and released instead of killed and made into a trophy.  
Because fecundity usually increases as an exponential function of body 
length, the number might be as exceptional as the age of the dead fish.

Good luck with your research and education.



David J. Shafer, Ph.D.
University of Hawai'i
3190 Maile Way
Honolulu, Hawai'i 96822

----- Original Message -----
From: Michaël RARD <Michael.Rard at univ-reunion.fr>
Date: Thursday, October 30, 2003 7:40 pm
Subject: [Coral-List] age of the new blue marlin World record !!!

> Dear all,
> Here in Reunion Island (Indian Ocean) in October 2003, the 12th, 
> during a big game fishing challenge was catched the new Blue Marlin 
> (Makaira mazara) woman world record !
> The titanesque fight was during 3h30 with a 130 lbs nylon line.
> This blue marlin shows a huge weight as 551 kg for a total lengh of 
> 4.41 m (4.17 m to the tail foark) !!!
> I have kept some 3 vertebral elements (vertebras), some parts of 
> the skin, with their thick scales. All elements are conserved in a 
> fridge (-18°C)
> I want to determine the age of this exceptionnal animal, therefore 
> I contact you to know how can I do, if you know persons who can 
> help me and if any of you know how to determine the age of this 
> type of fish. Apparently, I think we cannot determine the age with 
> its scales because they are very thick and without growth scratches.
> Many thanks for your help.
> Best regards.
> Michaël
> --
>                          Michaël RARD
> Laboratoire d'Ecologie Marine, Université de La Réunion
>   97715 Saint Denis messag CEDEX 9, France
> Tel : (262) 262-93-81-57, Fax : (262) 262-93-86-85
> http://perso.wanadoo.fr/mika.dit.kl/html/ContactsMika.htm
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