Production of juvenile barber goby Elacatinus figaro in captivity: developing technology to reduce fishing pressure on an endangered species

Shei, Marcelo Roberto Pereira; Miranda Filho, Kleber Campos; Rodrigues, Ricardo Vieira; Sampaio, Luís André Nassr de


The barber goby Elacatinus figaro, native to the Brazilian Atlantic coast, is endangered due to over-exploitation by the ornamental industry. It is expected that once the technology for juvenile production is mastered, one could reduce fishing pressure by commercializing fish raised in captivity and stocking enhancement programmes can be established. This work was carried out in order to describe natural breeding, embryonic development and larviculture of barber goby in the laboratory. The first spawning was observed 24 days after the pairs were formed, thereafter barber goby spawned every 8 to 10 days at 268C. Fecundity ranged from 430 to 1020 eggs per clutch with average hatching rate of 69 +16%. Fertilized eggs are elliptical in shape and present adhesive filaments at the proximal end and five protuberances at the distal end. Egg length averaged 1.81 +0.1 mm and mean width was 0.61 +0.03 mm. The embryonic developmental period lasted 7 days and newly hatched larvae measured 3.15 +0.07 mm, showing positive phototaxis. Larvae were fed with rotifers Brachionus plicatilis in green water culture along with the microalgae Nannochloropsis oculata from 1 to 20 days after hatching (DAH). Artemia nauplii were added to the diet 15 DAH, and 5 days later rotifers were no longer offered. The results of the present study demonstrate the viability to produce naturally spawned eggs of the barber goby E. figaro in captivity. Larvae settle to the bottom 28 to 35 DAH, when total length was equal to 8.5 mm in average.

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