Age Determination of Sardine (Sardina pilchardus) through Otoliths along Albanian Adriatic Coast


1Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Agricultural University of Tirana, Albania

2Laboratory of Aquaculture and Fishing, Agricultural University of Tirana, Durrës, Albania

3Faculty of Natural Science, Shkodra University, Albania


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Knowing the fish age allows fisheries managers to understand the dynamics of marine reserve. The purpose of this study was to define the age of sardines (Sardina pilchardus), based on sagittal otoliths, which found in the inner ear of fish. The study was conducted at the Research Institute of Fishery in Durres, in the period January 2008 – December 2009. During this time, 990 fish were analyzed monthly. The otoliths were removed from neurocranium, watched in stereomicroscope (40X) annual assessment circles around the otolithis opaque core. Age of fish is equal to the number of annual rings.

The study showed that the age average was 1.4 years (sd = 0.658), and 90% were 1+ and 2+ years. The average length was 13.27 cm and about 44% of sardines with length 12.5 – 14 cm.

The study will help determine the dynamics of populations of sardines accurately predicting the amount caught fish.

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