Marine and Freshwater Research Marine and Freshwater Research Society
Advances in the aquatic sciences
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Reproductive biology of the blue shark (Prionace glauca) in the western North Pacific Ocean

Yuki Fujinami A B C , Yasuko Semba A , Hiroaki Okamoto A , Seiji Ohshimo A and Sho Tanaka B
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A National Research Institute of Far Seas Fisheries, Japan Fisheries Research and Education Agency, 5-7-1, Orido, Shimizu, Shizuoka 424-8633, Japan.

B School of Marine Science and Technology, Tokai University, 3-20-1, Orido, Shimizu, Shizuoka 424-8610, Japan.

C Corresponding author. Email: fuji925@affrc.go.jp

Marine and Freshwater Research 68(11) 2018-2027 https://doi.org/10.1071/MF16101
Submitted: 30 March 2016  Accepted: 29 January 2017   Published: 20 April 2017

Abstract

The reproductive biology of the blue shark (Prionace glauca) in the western North Pacific Ocean was investigated to contribute to future stock assessments because of limitations of recent studies and the lack of information about the reproductive cycle. Reproductive data were obtained from 490 males (precaudal length (PCL), 33.4–252.0 cm) and 432 females (PCL, 33.4–243.3 cm). Size at 50% maturity was estimated to be 160.9 cm for males and 156.6 cm PCL for females. Litter size varied from 15 to 112 (mean 35.5) and was positively correlated with maternal PCL. Parturition, ovulation and mating occurred sequentially from spring to summer. The gestation period was estimated to be 11 months. The ovarian follicles of pregnant females developed synchronously throughout the gestation period along with embryonic growth, indicating that females reproduce annually. Our results showed that the productivity of North Pacific blue sharks is higher than previously thought, based on larger fecundity and a shorter reproductive cycle. These new findings will improve future stock assessments and provide management advice.

Additional keywords: fecundity, gestation, maternity, maturity, reproductive cycle.


References

Baremore, I. E., and Passerotti, M. S. (2013). Reproduction of the blacktip shark in the Gulf of Mexico. Marine and Coastal Fisheries 5, 127–138.
Reproduction of the blacktip shark in the Gulf of Mexico.CrossRef |

Bigelow, H. B., and Schroeder, W. C. (1948). Sharks. In ‘Fishes of the Western North Atlantic, Part One’. (Eds J. Teevan, C. M. Breeder, S. F. Hildebrand, A. E. Parr, and W. C. Schroeder.) pp. 53–576. (Sears Foundation for Marine Research, Yale University: USA.)

Block, B. A., Jonsen, I. D., Jorgensen, S. J., Winship, A. J., Shaffer, S. A., Bograd, S. J., Hazen, E. L., Foley, D. G., Breed, G. A., Harrison, A. L., Ganong, J. E., Swithenbank, A., Castleton, M., Dewar, H., Mate, B. R., Shillinger, G. L., Schaefer, K. M., Benson, S. R., Weise, M. J., Henry, R. W., and Costa, D. P. (2011). Tracking apex marine predator movements in a dynamic ocean. Nature 475, 86–90.
Tracking apex marine predator movements in a dynamic ocean.CrossRef | 1:CAS:528:DC%2BC3MXnvVekur4%3D&md5=3ca027e7ff5ab4991e556a4169123db3CAS |

Camhi, M. D., Lauck, E., Pilitch, E. K., and Babcock, E. A. (2008). A global overview of commercial fisheries for open ocean sharks. In ‘Sharks of the Open Ocean: Biology, Fisheries and Conservation’. (Eds M. D. Camhi, E. K. Pikitch, and E. A. Babcock.) pp. 166–192. (Blackwell Scientific: Oxford, UK.)

Campana, S. E., Dorey, A., Fowler, M., Joyce, W., Wang, Z., Wright, D., and Yashayaev, I. (2011). Migration pathways, behavioural thermoregulation and overwintering grounds of blue sharks in the Northwest Atlantic. PLoS One 6, e16854.
Migration pathways, behavioural thermoregulation and overwintering grounds of blue sharks in the Northwest Atlantic.CrossRef | 1:CAS:528:DC%2BC3MXivVymtbw%3D&md5=c01cefc81076a2db5704f3078ff20387CAS |

Carrera-Fernández, M., Galván-Magaña, F., and Ceballos-Vázquez, B. P. (2010). Reproductive biology of the blue shark Prionace glauca (Chondrichthyes: Carcharhinidae) off Baja California Sur, Mexico. Aqua 16, 3–15.

Castro, J. I. (1996). Biology of the blacktip shark, Carcharhinus limbatus, off the southeastern United States. Bulletin of Marine Science 59, 508–522.

Castro, J. I. (2009). Observations on the reproductive cycles of some viviparous North American sharks. Aqua 15, 205–222.

Castro, J. A., and Mejuto, J. (1995). Reproductive parameters of blue shark, Prionace glauca, and other sharks in the Gulf of Guinea. Marine and Freshwater Research 46, 967–973.
Reproductive parameters of blue shark, Prionace glauca, and other sharks in the Gulf of Guinea.CrossRef |

Francis, M. P., and Duffy, C. (2005). Length at maturity in three pelagic sharks (Lamna nasus, Isurus oxyrinchus, and Prionace glauca) from New Zealand. Fishery Bulletin 103, 489–500.

Galván-Tirado, C., Galván-Magaña, F., and Ochoa-Báez, R. I. (2015). Reproductive biology of the silky shark Carcharhinus falciformis in the southern Mexican Pacific. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 95, 561–567.
Reproductive biology of the silky shark Carcharhinus falciformis in the southern Mexican Pacific.CrossRef |

Gubanov, Ye. P., and Grigor’yev, V. N. (1975). Observations on the distribution and biology of the blue shark Prionace glauca (Carcharhinidae) of the Indian Ocean. Journal of Ichthyology 15, 37–43.

Hiraoka, Y., Kanaiwa, M., Ohshimo, S., Takahashi, N., Kai, M., and Yokawa, K. (2016). Relative abundance trend of blue shark Prionace glauca based on Japanese distant-water and offshore longliner activity in the North Pacific. Fisheries Science 82, 687–699.
Relative abundance trend of blue shark Prionace glauca based on Japanese distant-water and offshore longliner activity in the North Pacific.CrossRef | 1:CAS:528:DC%2BC28XhtFCitLjM&md5=3258ea12ba6c5bbcd149b4770fa35b59CAS |

ISC (2012). Report of the Shark Working Group Workshop. Annex-9. (International Scientific Committee for Tuna and Tuna-like Species in the North Pacific Ocean: Shizuoka, Japan.) Available at http://isc.fra.go.jp/pdf/ISC12/Annex%209%20-%20Report%20of%20the%20SHARKWG%20Workshop%20%28May–June%202012%29-final.pdf [Verified 12 April 2017].

ISC (2014). Stock assessment and future projections of blue shark in the North Pacific Ocean. Annex-13. Report of the Shark Working Group. (International Scientific Committee for Tuna and Tuna-like Species in the North Pacific Ocean: Taipei, Chinese-Taipei.) Available at http://isc.fra.go.jp/pdf/ISC14/Annex%2013%20-%20BSH%20assessment%20report%208-26-14-final.pdf

Jolly, K. A., da Silva, C., and Attwood, C. G. (2013). Age, growth and reproductive biology of the blue shark Prionace glauca in South African Waters. African Journal of Marine Science 35, 99–109.
Age, growth and reproductive biology of the blue shark Prionace glauca in South African Waters.CrossRef |

Joung, S. J., Hsu, H. H., Liu, K. M., and Wu, T. Y. (2011). Reproductive biology of the blue shark, Prionace glauca, in the northwestern Pacific. ISC/11/SHARKWG-2/12. In ‘Annex 4: Report of the Shark Working Group Workshop’, 28 November–3 December 2011, La Jolla, CA, USA. (International Scientific Committee for Tuna and Tuna-like Species in the North Pacific Ocean.) Available at http://isc.fra.go.jp/pdf/ISC12/Annex%204%20-%20Report%20of%20the%20SHARKWG%20Workshop%20(Nov%202011).pdf [Verified 6 March 2017].

Megalofonou, P., Damalas, D., and De Metrio, G. (2009). Biological characteristics of blue shark, Prionace glauca, in the Mediterranean Sea. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 89, 1233–1242.
Biological characteristics of blue shark, Prionace glauca, in the Mediterranean Sea.CrossRef |

Montealegre-Quijano, S., Cardoso, A. T. C., Silva, R. Z., Kinas, P. G., and Vooren, C. M. (2014). Sexual development, size at maturity, size at maternity and fecundity of the blue shark Prionace glauca (Linnaeus, 1758) in the Southwest Atlantic. Fisheries Research 160, 18–32.
Sexual development, size at maturity, size at maternity and fecundity of the blue shark Prionace glauca (Linnaeus, 1758) in the Southwest Atlantic.CrossRef |

Mucientes, G. R., Queiroz, N., Sousa, L. L., Tarroso, P., and Sims, D. W. (2009). Sexual segregation of pelagic sharks and the potential threat from fisheries. Biology Letters 5, 156–159.
Sexual segregation of pelagic sharks and the potential threat from fisheries.CrossRef |

Nakano, H. (1994). Age, reproduction and migration of the blue shark in the North Pacific Ocean. In ‘Bulletin of the National Research Institute of Far Seas Fisheries’, number 31, pp. 141–256. (National Research Institute of Far Seas Fisheries: Shizuoka, Japan.) [In Japanese].

Nakano, H., and Seki, M. P. (2003). Synopsis of biological data on the blue shark, Prionace glauca Linnaeus. Suisan Sougou Kenkyuu Senta Kenkyuu Houkoku 6, 18–55.

Nakano, H., and Stevens, J. D. (2008). The biology and ecology of the blue shark, Prionace glauca. In ‘Sharks of the Open Ocean: Biology, Fisheries and Conservation’. (Eds M. D. Camhi, E. K. Pikitch, and E. A. Babcock.) pp.140–151. (Blackwell Scientific: Oxford, UK.)

Natanson, L. J., and Gervelis, B. J. (2013). The reproductive biology of the common thresher shark in the western North Atlantic Ocean. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 142, 1546–1562.
The reproductive biology of the common thresher shark in the western North Atlantic Ocean.CrossRef |

Ohshimo, S., Fujinami, Y., Shiozaki, K., Kai, M., Semba, Y., Katsumata, N., Ochi, D., Matsunaga, H., Minami, H., Kiyota, M., and Yokawa, K. (2016). Distribution, body length, and abundance of blue shark and shortfin mako offshore of northeastern Japan, as determined from observed pelagic lingline data, 2000–2014. Fisheries Oceanography 25, 259–276.
Distribution, body length, and abundance of blue shark and shortfin mako offshore of northeastern Japan, as determined from observed pelagic lingline data, 2000–2014.CrossRef |

Pratt, H. L. (1979). Reproduction in the blue shark, Prionace glauca. Fishery Bulletin 77, 445–470.

Queiroz, N., Humphries, N. E., Mucientes, G., Hammerschlag, N., Lima, F. P., Scales, K. L., Miller, P. I., Sousa, L. L., Seabra, R., and Sims, D. W. (2016). Ocean-wide tracking of pelagic sharks reveals extent of overlap with longline fishing hotspots. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 113, 1582–1587.
Ocean-wide tracking of pelagic sharks reveals extent of overlap with longline fishing hotspots.CrossRef | 1:CAS:528:DC%2BC28Xhtlamtb0%3D&md5=2847592f844e4989dafdaa957655ccb1CAS |

Seki, T., Taniuchi, T., Nakno, H., and Shimizu, M. (1998). Age, growth and reproduction of the oceanic whitetip shark from the Pacific Ocean. Fisheries Science 64, 14–20.
| 1:CAS:528:DyaK1cXhtlygtro%3D&md5=b0b2fbeaf59276bc49349a2174b4f5ffCAS |

Stevens, J. D. (1974). The occurrence and significance on tooth cuts on the blue shark (Prionace glauca L.) from British waters. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom 54, 373–378.
The occurrence and significance on tooth cuts on the blue shark (Prionace glauca L.) from British waters.CrossRef |

Stevens, J. D., Bradford, R. W., and West, G. J. (2010). Satellite tagging of blue sharks (Prionace glauca) and other pelagic sharks off eastern Australia: depth behavior, temperature experience and movements. Marine Biology 157, 575–591.
Satellite tagging of blue sharks (Prionace glauca) and other pelagic sharks off eastern Australia: depth behavior, temperature experience and movements.CrossRef |

Strasburg, D. W. (1958). Distribution, abundance and sex composition, reproductive biology and diet of sharks from northern Australia. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research 42, 151–199.

Suda, A. (1953). Ecological study of blue shark (Prionace glauca Linne). In ‘Bulletin of the Nankai Fisheries Research Laboratory’, number 26, pp. 1–11. (Nankai Regional Fisheries Research Laboratory: Kochi, Japan.) [In Japanese].

Taguchi, M., King, J. R., Wetklo, M., Withler, R. E., and Yokawa, K. (2015). Population genetic structure and demographic history of Pacific blue sharks (Prionace glauca) inferred from mitochondrial DNA analysis. Marine and Freshwater Research 66, 267–275.
Population genetic structure and demographic history of Pacific blue sharks (Prionace glauca) inferred from mitochondrial DNA analysis.CrossRef | 1:CAS:528:DC%2BC2MXjs1Wnsrk%3D&md5=fdfe059b9911ee9e675112d3fa24a780CAS |

Teshima, K. (1981). Studies on the reproduction of Japanese smooth dogfishes, Mustelus manazo and M. griseus. Suisan Daigakko Kenkyu Hokoku 29, 113–199.

Vandeperre, F., Aires-da-Silva, A., Fontes, J., Santos, M., Serrão Santos, R., and Afonso, P. (2014). Movements of blue shark (Prionace glauca) across their life history. PLoS One 9, e103538.
Movements of blue shark (Prionace glauca) across their life history.CrossRef |

Weng, K. C., Castilho, P. C., Morrissette, J. M., Landeira-Fernandez, A. M., Holts, D. B., Schallert, R. J., Goldman, K. J., and Block, B. A. (2005). Satellite tagging and cardiac physiology reveal niche expansion in salmon sharks. Science 310, 104–106.
Satellite tagging and cardiac physiology reveal niche expansion in salmon sharks.CrossRef | 1:CAS:528:DC%2BD2MXhtVOjsr7O&md5=686bed302add3fceb8ff545fc44ad922CAS |

Zhu, J., Dai, X., Xu, L., Chen, X., and Chen, Y. (2011). Reproductive biology of female blue shark Prionace glauca in the southeastern Pacific Ocean. Environmental Biology of Fishes 91, 95–102.
Reproductive biology of female blue shark Prionace glauca in the southeastern Pacific Ocean.CrossRef |



Rent Article (via Deepdyve) Supplementary MaterialSupplementary Material (348 KB) Export Citation Cited By (1)

View Altmetrics