Froese R., Luna S., 2004. No relationship between fecundity and annual reproductive rate in bony fish. Acta Ichthyol. Piscat. 34 (1): 11-20.
Background. There is still a widespread notion that bony fishes with high fecundities are more productive and therefore more resistant to overexploitation. The purpose of this study was to formally explore the relationship between fecundity and reproductive success expressed as maximum annual reproductive rate, i.e. the number of new spawners produced by existing spawners at low population densities.
Materials and methods. We used maximum annual reproductive rate from a recent study covering 49 species of bony fish; we used fecundity estimates from the published literature.
Results. We found no significant relationship between fecundity (ranging from 368 to 10 million eggs) and maximum annual reproductive rate (ranging from 0.4 to 13.5 replacement spawners).
Conclusion. Fecundity in oviparous bony fish without parental care has no relation with reproductive success. Apparently high fecundity in bony fish has evolved to counter-balance pre-adult mortality, as indicated by the fact that variance in fecundity is 3 orders of magnitude larger than variance in annual reproductive rate.
Keywords: fish, fecundity, annual reproductive rate, pre-adult mortality