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Brazilian Journal of Oceanography

On-line version ISSN 1982-436X

Braz. j. oceanogr. vol.62 no.spe1 São Paulo  2014

http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1679-875920140637062sp1 

Atlas of marine bony fish otoliths (Sagittae) of Southeastern - Southern Brazil Part I: Gadiformes (Macrouridae, Moridae, Bregmacerotidae, Phycidae and Merlucciidae); Part II: Perciformes (Carangidae, Sciaenidae, Scombridae and Serranidae)

 

 

Carmen Lucia Del Bianco Rossi-WongtschowskiI; Carolina Correia SiliprandiI; Marina Rito BrenhaI; Silvia de Almeida GonsalesI; Cesar SantificeturI; André Martins Vaz-dos-SantosII

IInstituto Oceanográfico da Universidade de São Paulo, (Praça do Oceanográfico, 191, 05508-120 São Paulo, SP, Brasil), Corresponding author: cwongski@usp.br
IIUniversidade Federal do Paraná - Setor Palotina, (Rua Pioneiro, 2153, 85950-000 Palotina, PR, Brasil)

 

 


ABSTRACT

The drawings, detailed pictures, precise descriptions and measurements that characterize otoliths must be made available for studies in various areas, including taxonomy, phylogeny, ecology, fisheries, paleontology, diversity, predator-prey relationships and modeling. The Collection of Teleostei Fish Otoliths of Southeastern-Southern Brazil (COSS-Brasil) of IOUSP contains 45,000 pairs of otoliths from 210 species. This publication is the first in a series that will constitute an atlas of Teleostei otoliths for southeastern-southern Brazil and presents the results of the morphologic and morphometric analyses of 11 Gadiformes and 36 Perciformes species by means of the most commonly used features, measurements and indices. Three otoliths of each species were illustrated and photographed whenever possible. The frequency of occurrence was calculated for each characteristic by total length classes (TL), and the ontogenetic differences were analyzed (multiple χ2 test; significance 0.05). Morphometric analyses were conducted for each characteristic per total length (TL) class and for the whole sample, and the ontogenetic differences were analyzed.

Descriptors: Otoliths, Morphology, Morphometry, Southwestern Atlantic, Brazil.


RESUMO

A disponibilidade de desenhos, fotos detalhadas, descrições precisas e medidas que caracterizem os otólitos são ferramentas imprescindíveis para diversas áreas: taxonomia, filogenia, ecologia, pesca, paleontologia, diversidade, relações presa/predador e modelagem. Da Coleção de Otólitos de Peixes Teleósteos da Região Sudeste-Sul do Brasil (COSS-Brasil), IOUSP, constam quarenta e cinco mil pares relativos a 210 espécies. Esta publicação é a primeira de uma série que constituirá um atlas de otólitos para Teleostei da região sudeste-sul brasileira e apresenta os resultados de análises morfológicas e morfométricas de 11 espécies de Gadiformes e 36 de Perciformes das medidas e índices usualmente realizados. Foram desenhados e fotografados três otólitos de cada espécie sempre que possível. A frequência de ocorrência foi calculada por classes de comprimento total (TL) e para toda a amostra, e diferenças ontogenéticas foram analisadas.

Descritores: Otólitos, Morfologia, Morfometria, Atlântico Sudoeste, Brasil.


 

 

INTRODUCTION

Otoliths are concretions composed of calcium carbonate (95.0%, mainly crystallized in the form of aragonite), organic matter (3.0-5.0%) and trace elements (CAMPANA, 2004), are present in the auditory capsule of bony fish and are part of a system related to the mechanisms for equilibrium and hearing (MOYLE; CECH Jr., 2004). Bony fish have three pairs of symmetrical otoliths, the sagitta, lapillus and asteriscus, and various studies have indicated that the sagittae are the largest and most utilized in most species.

Otoliths grow through the addition of concentric layers of calcium carbonate on a protein base, which results in an asymmetrical structure in which the different rates of organic and inorganic deposits become zones with different optical properties over time. These depositions are the result of alterations in growth, temperature fluctuations, diseases, reproductive activity and food resource availability and consumption, among others. Otoliths are, therefore, one of the most important structures in the understanding of the life cycle of fish and their populations (CAMPANA, 2004), and several studies (SECOR et al., 1995; VOLPEDO; ECHEVERRÍA, 2003; ASSIS, 2004; CAMPANA, 2005; MONTEIRO et al., 2005; VOLPEDO et al., 2008; GREEN et al., 2009) have summarized the utilization of these structures.

The importance of the use of otoliths in the study of fish populations has been extensively documented in the literature; over the last 30 years, it has become entirely possible to understand the birth, growth, age and mortality of the species studied through these structures (JONES, 2010). However, according to this author, minimal attention has focused on comparing these structures between species or families, although these differences are notable for showing life patterns, resilience, susceptibility to fishing and changes due to anthropogenic causes.

During the 4th International Otolith Symposium, which occurred in 2009 in Monterey, California, the numerous studies that were presented by renowned scientists allowed for the evaluation of the multiple applications of otolith studies in many fields, including taxonomy, phylogeny, comparisons of lifespans and energy budgets in different fish populations and studies investigating the chronology of direct (metabolism) or indirect (food resource availability) environmental events, larval dispersion, larval periods and mortality, recruitment failure, larval retention patterns, the exposure of fish to contaminants, anthropogenic processes (which cause changes in the abundance and diversity of the components of an ecosystem), bioindicators of environmental pulses/changes, the effects of protected areas in fishery management, the determination  of the origin of species, the diversity of environmental colonization, the introduction and invasion of new species, the identification of fish in the diet of other species, metamorphosis, the proportion of distinct populations, life history, geolocation (retrospective displacement studies, especially for estuarine fish), archeology, physiology, contamination (by selenium and mercury), phylogenetic relationships, the characteristics of otoliths and trophic niches, ecomorphology, the effects of a change in diet (in aquaculture), panmixia, transoceanic migrations, signs of nesting and nursery areas, reconstruction of the migration of juveniles, segregation, parasitism, the understanding of the state of fisheries (in time series), trophic position, the differentiation between forms of species living in shallow or deep waters, population structures, mortality estimation (natural tags) and population connectivity.

The following attributes contribute to the use of otoliths in various fields of study: (i) otolith forms are characteristic for each species of fish (CAMPANA, 2004; GALLEY et al., 2006), and variations in the patterns could be the result of genetic, ontogenetic, phylogenetic and environmental factors; (ii) the life history is recorded and retained because the sagittae are present in fish at hatching and absorption or decalcification does not occur at any point in the life cycle; and (iii) the life history can also be evaluated from the chemical variations that occur in the trace elements of these structures.

The collection of otoliths in well-organized collections constitutes, therefore, the sine qua non for their utilization in studies of diverse natures (CAMPANA, 2005). Using these collections, many researchers have organized otolith guides in institutions devoted to research and teaching for utilization across multiple fields (e.g. WILLIAMS; McELDOWNEY, 1990; VOLPEDO; ECHEVERRÍA, 2000; ASSIS, 2004; CAMPANA, 2004; BAREMORE; BETHEA, 2005; LOMBARTE et al., 2006; FURLANI et al., 2007; TUSET et al., 2008).

Various studies have included evolutionary histories written on the basis of the knowledge of fish otoliths, the most complete of them including those of  Hecht (1987), Assis (2004) and Tuset et al. (2008). Below we present some of the notable facts of this evolution, though our presentation is not exhaustive.

In the previous decades of the 19th century, E. Koken organized a collection of otoliths from Mediterranean fish, which permitted the identification of the fish fossils of that region. The series of monographs prepared by Koken was an essential turning point in the study of otoliths because it described their basic morphology and proposed a terminology for their constituent parts (KOKEN, 1891).

Until the 1920s, the illustrations of the otolith morphological characteristics of recent species were imprecise and insufficient. Although there were periods of fluctuating production, a considerable advance was made in morphological studies between 1920 and 1960, these including those by Frost, Sanz-Echeverría, Chaine and Duvergier, Chaine, Weiler and Bauzá-Rullán, among others (TUSET et al., 2008).

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, new perspectives on the use of otoliths arose, and researchers began to use them to determine the age of fish and in regard to predator-prey feeding relationships. This tendency turned otoliths into one of the most utilized anatomical components of fish, and this resulted in the reappearance of descriptive and anatomical otolith studies in the literature (TUSET et al., 2008).

As from the end of the 1970s, numerous studies were published that were relatively extensive, either general or specific, at the family, genus or species level, and contained detailed illustrations or photographs of these structures. Otolith catalogues have recently been added to these studies, which has allowed for specific species identification (BAREMORE; BETHEA, 2005). The AFORO database has been created more recently, and is an interactive catalogue that includes an automatic system of species identification based on the mathematical description of the otolith characteristics (LOMBARTE et al., 2006; 2010).

Currently, based on geography, there are various catalogues regarding otoliths: Schmidt (1968) covering the fish of the eastern Atlantic; Morrow (1977; 1979) about the fish on the American north Atlantic coast; Nolf (1985) describing species of wide distribution, and fossils; Härkönen (1986) covering fish from the North Sea; Hecht (1987) and Smale et al. (1995) on species of South Africa; Williams and McEldowney (1990) about species of the Australian Antarctic region; Rivaton and Bourret (1999) concerning species in the Indo-Pacific; Naveda (2001) dealing with species from Peru; Volpedo and Echeverría (2000) concerning species from Argentina; Assis (2000; 2004) covering species from the coastal regions, estuaries and rivers of Portugal; Campana (2004) devoted to North American species; and Furlani et al. (2007) on species from Australia.

The above-mentioned studies specifically address otoliths; however, there are many other authors who acknowledge the importance of the morphology of these structures and include images and/or detailed descriptions of otoliths in their studies, even when their studies have alternative objectives. Among these studies, we cite the most recent ones that involve this subject matter: Rodríguez-Roda (1980); Gauldie (1988); Messieh et al. (1989); Lombarte and Castellón (1991); Lombarte (1992); Popper and Platt (1993); Campana and Casselman (1993); Lombarte and Morales-Nin (1995); Nielsen (1995); Aguirre and Lombarte (1999); Lychakov and Rebane (2000); Volpedo and Echeverría (2000; 2003); Ramcharitar et al. (2001; 2004); Morales-Nin and Panfili (2002); Aguirre (2003); Assis (2003; 2004; 2005); Tuset et al. (2003a; 2003b; 2006; 2008); Cardinale et al. (2004); Cruz and Lombarte (2004); Lychakov et al. (2006) and Lombarte and Cruz (2007) (more studies are quoted in LOMBARTE et al., 2006).

In Brazil, studies aimed exclusively at characterizing the otoliths of Teleost species of the southeastern-southern shelf have been conducted by various researchers: Braga and Goiten (1985) described the otoliths of the bluewing searobin, Prionotus punctatus, of the Anchieta Island region in São Paulo; Bastos (1990) analyzed the teleost fish of this region; Corrêa and Vianna (1992/93), Lemos et al. (1992/93) and Abilhôa and Corrêa (1992/93) described the otoliths of the sciaenids, gerreids and carangids of the Paraná coast, respectively; Monteiro et al. (2005) analyzed the otoliths of sciaenids from Rio de Janeiro.

The Laboratory of Ichthyofauna and Growth of IOUSP (Laboratório de Ictiofauna e Crescimento – LABIC) has produced several publications, including Vaz-dos-Santos et al. (2007), Bellucco (2008), Siliprandi (2009) and Santificetur et al. (2010).

The LABIC has organized the Collection of Otoliths of Teleost Fish of Southeastern-southern Brazil (Coleção de Otólitos de Peixes Teleósteos da Região Sudeste-Sul do Brasil – COSS-Brasil), which is composed of more than 45,000 pairs of sagittae from approximately 210 species that are distributed among 70 families and 20 orders. Information concerning the origins of the otoliths (the georeferenced data of the capture points and biological data collected) is stored in a database.

The goal of the LABIC is to be a center for the development and improvement of studies involving the morphology of otoliths and a depository for the sagittae of Southeastern-Southern Atlantic fish, and to make its collection available to the national and international communities that use these structures in different research areas.

Based on COSS-Brasil, we intend to develop a practical guide to these structures which will serve as an important instrument for studies related to the knowledge of the ichthyofauna of the region and as a basis for phylogenetic studies, the identification of species in archeological sites and studies on predator-prey relationships. In the future, this guide will be available as a website, which is currently under development.

In order to quickly disclose the results obtained we intend to publish it in parts, as soon as they are ready. In this article we present the otolith descriptions of 11 species of Gadiformes (Part I) and 36 of Perciformes (Part II).

Sampling Area

In relation to its fauna, this region is a section of the Argentinian Zoogeographic Marine Province, which is delineated in the north by Cabo Frio (22ºS) and by the Valdez Peninsula in Argentina (42°S) in the south. This area represents a region of faunal transition and contains both tropical and temperate species of fish, in addition to endemic species (FIGUEIREDO, 1981).

The area (Fig. 1) comes under the influence of three water masses: Tropical Water (TW) with a temperature (T) > 20ºC and salinity (S) > 36.4; Central Southern Atlantic Water (CSAW) with a T < 20ºC and S < 36; and Coastal Water (CW), which is a mixture of continental and saltwater that has a low salinity (T > 20°C and S < 36). The internal area of the shelf primarily consists of CW; however, on the external portion of the shelf, the upper portion consists of TW, whereas the lower portion mainly consists of CSAW. In the summer, CSAW enters the intermediate and internal shelf with fluctuating intensities, which causes resurgences (CASTRO; MIRANDA 1998).

 

 

 

MATERIAL AND METHODS

The fish and their otoliths were collected in various fishing surveys conducted on the Brazilian continental shelf and slopes between 22ºS and 34ºS:

● The REVIZEE Program - “Evaluation of the Sustainability Potential of the Living Resources in the Exclusively Brazilian Economic Zone” (BRASIL, 2006) performed between 1996 and 2005 between 100 and 1200 m deep;

● ECOSAR II and III Projects - “Brazilian Sardine Hydroacoustic Projects” (MADUREIRA; ROSSI-WONGTSCHOWSKI, 2005) conducted in 2005 between 10 and 500 m d eep;

● Integrated Project (Projeto Integrado – PI) - “Rational utilization of coastal ecosystems in the Brazilian tropics - State of São Paulo” (PIRES-VANIN et al., 1993; ROSSI-WONGTSCHOWSKI; PAES, 1993; ROCHA; ROSSI-WONGTSCHOWSKI, 1998) conducted between 1985 and 1988 between 10 and 75 m deep;

● ECOSAR IV, V, VI and VII Project - “Brazilian Sardine Hydroacoustic Project” developed in 2008, 2009 and 2010 between 30 and 100 m deep (CERGOLE; DIAS-NETO, 2011); and

● OGX I, II, III and IV Project - “Acoustics prospection, eggs, larvae and adult fish surveys in an area undergoing oil drilling” (OGX; IO-FURG; IOUSP, 2013)

The teleost species were identified in accordance with Figueiredo and Menezes (1978; 1980; 2000), Menezes and Figueiredo (1980; 1985), Figueiredo et al. (2002), Menezes et al. (2003), Bernardes et al. (2005) and Nelson (2006).

The left otolith of each pair was used for the measurements and photographs. Whenever they were available in the collection, 3 representative otoliths of the smallest, intermediate and largest fish were selected for the illustrations and photographs to describe the ontogenetic variations. The otoliths were covered with graphite powder to bring out their features, and illustrations of the internal and external sides and profile of the ventral region of these structures were drawn.

The illustrations were made with the aid of a light box under incident light and subsequently drawn with ink on tracing paper using the pointillism technique. The drawings were then digitized, and the plates were organized for each species. Subsequent to illustration, the otoliths were photographed in identical positions using Discovery V12 Carl Zeiss equipment.

The morphological analysis was conducted by randomly selecting 10 otoliths per total length (TL) class of each species, whenever they were available in the collection, which covered the range of fish sizes available. When the number of otoliths in a length class was less than 10, all of the specimens of that class were analyzed.

The criteria for the evaluation of the otoliths' characteristics followed the terminology of Assis (2004) and Tuset et al. (2008). Each otolith was analyzed by 3 researchers using a stereomicroscope, and the following features were examined: 1) the otolith's shape, 2) the shape of the anterior region, 3) the shape of the posterior region, 4) the dorsal and ventral edges, 5) the position of the sulcus acusticus, 6) the orientation of the sulcus acusticus, 7) the opening of the sulcus acusticus, 8) the morphology of the sulcus acusticus, 9) the morphology of the colliculum, 10) the morphology of the ostium, 11) the morphology of the cauda, 12) the otolith's profile, 13) the orientation  of the rostrum and antirostrum, 14) the development of the rostrum and antirostrum and 15) the development of the pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum. Following the analysis of the otolith set by the 3 researchers, the results obtained for each characteristic were organized into tables and graphs. For each of the 15 characteristics, the frequency of occurrence according to the length class and total were calculated, and a multiple χ2test, with confidence level of 0.05 (ZAR, 2010), was applied to identify the possible structural differences throughout the development of a species (when n ≥ 10).

In this atlas the highest percentages for the characteristics mentioned are shown in parentheses with the measurement variations. Unless stated otherwise, the values refer to 100% of the cases.

The same otoliths used in the morphological analysis were also used for the morphometric analysis of the sagittae. Data for length (OL – the greatest distance of the anteroposterior axis), height (OH – the greatest distance of the dorsoventral axis), thickness (OT – the maximum width of the otolith), perimeter and area were obtained from the photographs of the inside and ventral profiles of the structures. Data collection was assisted by the AxioVision 4.8 software, which is available with the Discovery V12 Carl Zeiss equipment. An analysis of the measurements obtained for each species was conducted according to the method proposed by Tuset et al. (2006; 2008).

The perimeter and area data were used to calculate the circularity (Ci) and/or rectangularity (Re) indices: Ci = C²/A (where Ci= circularity, C= perimeter, and A= area) and Re=A/(OL x OH) (where Re= rectangularity, A= area, OL= otolith length, and OH= otolith height).

Shape indices were calculated using the ratios of the measurements of the otoliths; namely, the lengths of the otoliths and the lengths of the fish: OL/TLx100 (where OL=otolith length and TL=total length of the fish), OL/OHx100 (where OH=otolith height), OL/OTx100 (where OT=otolith thickness) and OH/OTx100.

In the plates the otolith's identification (ID) is shown according to the fish's reference in the COSS-Brasil database.

The diagnostic characteristics of the families that belong to the Gadiformes and Perciformes orders and an identification key for the genera represented by more than one species are shown after the species' descriptions.

 

RESULTS

PART I: GADIFORMES

(MACROURIDAE, MORIDAE, PHYCIDAE, BREGMACEROTIDAE and MERLUCCIIDAE)

Family MACROURIDAE

This family has a prevalence of otoliths with an elliptic shape, a supramedian position and homosulcoid morphology of the sulcus acusticus. The colliculum is homomorphic.

 

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Shape: elliptic (80.95%), oblong to elliptic or cuneiform to elliptic; Anterior region: oblique to angled-round (50.79%), angled-round or oblique-round; Posterior region: peaked-round (88.89%) or oblique-round; Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate (85.71%) or lobed; Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (36.51%), sinuate to entire (36.51%), sinuate or entire; Profile: biconvex; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement; Rostrum: undeveloped (87.30%) or developed; Antirostrum: undeveloped (55.56%) or absent; Pseudorostrum: absent (77.78%), undeveloped or developed; Pseudo-antirostrum: absent; Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian (88.89%) or median; orientation: slightly ascending (66.67%) or horizontal; opening: para-ostial (44.44%), ostial, ostio-caudal or pseudo-ostio-caudal; morphology: homosulcoid; colliculum: homomorphic; ostium: elliptic; and cauda: elliptic.

Significant differences (p<0.05) were observed among some length classes for otolith shape, anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges, position, orientation and opening of the sulcus acusticus and otolith rostrum. Only the posterior region of the otolith showed significant differences along the growth development.

 

 

 

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Shape: elliptic; Anterior region: oblique to peaked (52.78%), oblique to peaked-round, oblique to angled-round; Posterior region: oblique-round (75%) or oblique to peaked-round; Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate (83.33%), lobed or sinuate; Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (66.67%), lobed or sinuate to entire; Profile: plano-convex (69.44%) or biconvex; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement; Rostrum: undeveloped; Antirostrum: undeveloped (63.89%) or absent; Pseudorostrum: undeveloped; Pseudo-antirostrum: absent; Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: slightly ascending (61.11%), horizontal or ascending; opening: ostio-caudal (58.33%), caudal, pseudo-ostio-caudal or para-ostial; morphology: homosulcoid; colliculum: homomorphic; ostium: elliptic; and cauda: elliptic.

Significant differences (p<0.05) among the length classes were observed for the posterior region, dorsal and ventral edges, orientation and opening of the sulcus acusticus and otolith profile. There was no significant difference along the growth development.

 

 

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Shape: elliptic (95.58%) or trapezoidal to elliptic; Anterior region: peaked-round (33.63%), angled-round (30.09%), oblique to angled-round, oblique to peaked-round, oblique to peaked or round; Posterior region: oblique to peaked-round (35.40%), oblique-round (32.74%), oblique to blunt-round or oblique to peaked; Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate (96.46%) or sinuate. From 260 mm (TL) or greater, the otoliths of this species present a protuberance on the dorsal edge of the posterior region (49.56%); Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (17.7%) in small specimens, and sinuate to entire (50.44%), sinuate or entire in larger specimens; Profile: biconvex; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement (94.69%) or in disagreement; Rostrum: undeveloped (96.46%) or developed; Antirostrum: absent (66.37%) or undeveloped; Pseudorostrum: absent (51.33%), developed or undeveloped; Pseudo-antirostrum: absent; Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian (96.46%) or median; orientation: slightly descending (49.56%), horizontal or descending; opening: ostio-caudal (53.98%), caudal, ostial, para-ostial or pseudo-ostio-caudal; morphology: homosulcoid; colliculum: homomorphic; ostium: elliptic; and cauda: elliptic.

Significant differences (p<0.05) were observed among some length classes for otolith shape; the anterior and posterior regions; dorsal and ventral edges; position, orientation and opening of the sulcus acusticus; rostrum and antirostrum orientations; and the rostrum, antirostrum and pseudorostrum of the otoliths. There were significant differences along the growth development for the anterior and posterior regions, ventral edge and pseudorostrum.

 

 

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Shape: elliptic; Anterior region: oblique-round (58.21%), oblique to angled-round or oblique to peaked-round. There is a protuberance on the dorsal-anterior edge in 88.06% of otoliths; Posterior edge: oblique-round (83.58%), oblique to blunt-round or round; Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate (32.84%), sinuate to entire (31.34%), lobed to entire or sinuate; Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (50.75%), sinuate or sinuate to entire; Profile: biconvex; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement; Rostrum: undeveloped; Antirostrum: undeveloped (76.12%), developed or absent; Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent; Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: slightly ascending (61.19%) or horizontal; opening: para-ostial (52.24%), ostio-caudal, ostial or pseudo-ostio-caudal; morphology: homosulcoid; colliculum: homomorphic; ostium: elliptic; and cauda: elliptic.

Significant differences (p<0.05) were observed among some length classes for the anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges, opening of the sulcus acusticus and antirostrum of the otoliths. There were significant differences along the growth development for the dorsal and ventral edges' characteristics.

 

 

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Family MORIDAE

The shape is sagittiform. The rostrum and antirostrum are absent, the pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum are developed, the sulcus acusticus is in an inframedian position, and there is a caudal opening. The species of this family have a collicular crest in the region of the sulcus acusticus, which extends to the posterior region beyond the limits of the otolith; there are depressions (upper and lower “depressione areae”) on the dorsal and ventral edges of the otolith. Assis (2004) noted that these characteristics are important for identifying members of this family.

 

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Shape: sagittiform; Anterior region: peaked; Posterior region: lanceolated-round; Dorsal anterior edge: entire (71.43%) or sinuate to entire; Dorsal posterior edge: sinuate to entire (78.57%) or entire; Ventral edge: entire; Profile: plane-convex; Rostrum and antirostrum: absent; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply; Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: developed; Sulcus acusticus: position: inframedian; orientation: horizontal; opening: caudal; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: absent; ostium: elliptic; and cauda: elliptic.

There were no significant differences (p<0.05) among the length classes or along the growth development.

 

 

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Shape: sagittiform; Anterior region: oblique-round; Posterior region: lanceolated; Dorsal anterior edge: sinuate; Dorsal posterior edge: entire; Ventral edge: entire; Profile: plane-convex; Rostrum and antirostrum: absent; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply; Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: developed; Sulcus acusticus: position: median (83.33%) or inframedian; orientation: slightly ascending; opening: caudal (83.33%) or ostio-caudal; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic, when present; ostium: oval (83%) or elliptic; and cauda: tubular, slightly curved.

There were no significant differences (p<0.05) among the length classes or along the growth development.

 

 

 

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Family PHYCIDAE

Otoliths with an oblong to lanceolated shape predominate, the morphology of the sulcus acusticus is archaesulcoid, and the morphology of the colliculum is unimorphic. There are narrow, well-marked depressions over the sulcus acusticus on both the superior and inferior portions.

 

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Shape: oblong to lanceolated; Anterior region: oblique to peaked (60%), oblique to peaked-round or oblique to angled-round; Posterior region: lanceolated-round; Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire (90%) or lobed to entire; Anterior ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (60%), lobed or sinuate; Posterior ventral edge: sinuate to entire (56.67%) or sinuate; Profile: concave-convex (93.33%) or plane-convex; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement; Rostrum: undeveloped; Antirostrum: absent; Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent; Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian, orientation: slightly ascending (86.67%) or horizontal; opening: para-ostial (70%) or pseudo-ostio-caudal; morphology: archaesulcoid; and colliculum: unimorphic.

There were significant differences (p<0.05) among some length classes for the dorsal edge, orientation and opening of the sulcus acusticus and otolith profile. However, there were no differences along the growth development.

 

 

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Shape: oblong to lanceolated (92.45%) or spindle-shaped to lanceolated; Anterior region: oblique-round (66.67%) or oblique to angled; Posterior region: lanceolated to peaked (96.23%) or lanceolated-round; Dorsal edge: entire (62.89%) or sinuate to entire. The lobed to entire form was frequently encountered in the smaller specimens; Anterior ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (44.65%), sinuate or entire. The smaller otoliths had a lobed edge; Posterior ventral edge: in the small specimens, lobed to sinuate (10.69%) or lobed to entire; in the larger specimens, entire (33.33%), sinuate to entire (31.45%) or sinuate; Profile: concave-convex; Rostrum and antirostrum: absent; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply; Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent; Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: lightly ascending (93.71%) or horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostio-caudal (60.38%), para-ostial or ostio-caudal; morphology: archaesulcoid; and colliculum: unimorphic.

There were significant differences (p<0.05) among some length classes in the otolith shape; anterior and posterior regions; dorsal, ventral and posterior ventral edges; and orientation and opening of the sulcus acusticus. There was a significant difference in the dorsal, anterior ventral and posterior ventral edges along the growth development.

 

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Family BREGMACEROTIDAE

The otolith's shape is square to discoidal, and the position of the sulcus acusticus inframedian, mesial.

 

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Shape: square to discoidal (68.75%); however, the larger specimens tend to be hexagonal to discoidal; Anterior region: flattened-round (65.63%), round, flattened to angled-round or angled to round; Posterior region: round (46.88%), flattened-round or angled to round; Dorsal edge: sinuate (62.50%), crenate or sinuate to entire; Ventral edge: entire (62.50%) or sinuate to entire; Anterior edge: entire (56.25%) or sinuate to entire; Posterior edge: entire (37.50%), sinuate to entire (37.50%) or sinuate; Profile: biconvex (62.50%) or plane-convex; Rostrum and antirostrum: absent; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply; Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent; Sulcus acusticus: position: inframedian; orientation: horizontal, slightly descending; opening: mesial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: oval (75%) or elliptic; and cauda: elliptic.

There were significant differences (p<0.05) within and among of the length classes for the anterior region; dorsal, ventral and posterior edges; and ostium morphology. There was a significant difference in the dorsal and posterior edges of the otolith along the growth development.

 

 

 

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Shape: square to discoidal (81.93%); however, the larger individuals tend to be hexagonal to discoidal; Anterior region: flattened-round (75.86%), angled-round or round; Posterior region: round (45.78%), angled-round or flattened-round; Dorsal edge: sinuate (85.54%) or sinuate to entire; Ventral edge: entire (75.9%) or sinuate to entire; Anterior edge: entire (59.04%) or sinuate to entire; Posterior edge: sinuate to entire (65.06%), sinuate or entire; Profile: plane-convex (65.06%) or biconvex; Rostrum and antirostrum: absent; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply; Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent; Sulcus acusticus: position: inframedian; orientation: horizontal (68.67%) or slightly descending; opening: mesial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: oval (62.65%) or elliptic; and cauda: elliptic.

There were significant differences (p<0.05) among some of the length classes for the otolith shape; anterior and posterior regions; the dorsal, ventral, anterior and posterior edges; the orientation of the sulcus acusticus; morphology of the ostium; and otolith profile. There was a significant difference along the growth development only in the posterior region.

 

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Family MERLUCCIIDAE

 

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Shape: the smaller otoliths are elliptic, and the largest are lanceolated to elliptic (88.69%); Anterior region: oblique-round (84.16%), oblique to angled-round or oblique to peaked-round; Posterior region: the smallest otoliths are peaked-round, the largest are lanceolated-round (71.95%) or lanceolated; Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate (52.94%) or lobed; Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (45.25%), sinuate to entire, lobed, lobed to entire or sinuate; Profile: plane-convex (70.59%) or flattened; Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement; Rostrum: absent (80.09%) or undeveloped; Antirostrum: absent (81%) or undeveloped; Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent; Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal (95.02%) or slightly ascending; opening: mesial (91.86%) or pseudo-ostial; morphology: homosulcoid; colliculum: homomorphic; ostium: elliptic; and cauda: elliptic.

Some otoliths of this species had a protuberance on the dorsal-anterior region, and some otoliths, particularly the larger ones, had an excisura on the anterior region.

There were significant differences (p<0.05) among some of the length classes in the otolith shape, anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges, orientation and opening of the sulcus acusticus, otolith profile, and rostrum and antirostrum of the otolith. Significant differences along the growth development occurred for the otolith shape, anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges, otolith profile, and rostrum and antirostrum.

 

 

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IDENTIFICATION KEY  

Family MACROURIDAE

Genus Malacocephalus

The angle between the posterior and median regions of the ventral edge is slightly accentuated (approximately 100°); the otolith medial and lateral faces are rough, throughout development…………………………………….Malacocephalus laevis

The angle between the posterior and median regions of the ventral edge is accentuated (approximately 120°); the end of the posterior region of the dorsal edge has a marked protuberance………………………………...…Malacocephalus occidentalis

Family PHYCIDAE

Genus Urophycis

The anterior region is predominantly oblique to peaked; the rostrum is undeveloped; the antirostrum is absent; the opening of the sulcus acusticus is predominantly para-ostial…………………………………………………..…….Urophycis brasiliensis

The anterior region is oblique-round; the rostrum and antirostrum are absent; the opening of the sulcus acusticus is mostly pseudo-ostio-cauda………………………………………………………………………………...………..Urophycis mystacea

Family BREGMACEROTIDAE

Genus Bregmaceros

The posterior region of the dorsal edge is entire; the lateral face has an obvious round protuberance that remains throughout development……………………………………………………………………………..…………...….Bregmaceros atlanticus

The posterior region of the dorsal edge has an accentuated groove; the round protuberance of the external face tends to diminish in larger otoliths…………………………………………………………………………………..Bregmaceros cantori

 

PART II: PERCIFORMES
(CARANGIDAE, SCIAENIDAE, SCOMBRIDAE and SERRANIDAE)

Family CARANGIDAE

Otoliths with elliptic to lanceolated shape predominate, but with variations as rectangular, spindle-shaped and hour glass. The most common profile is the concave-convex.

 

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Shape: elliptic to lanceolated (97.89%), elliptic. Anterior region: lanceolated (55.79%), lanceolated-round, peaked-round. Posterior region: angled-round (78.95%), angled, round. Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate (45.26%), sinuate (42.11%), sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: sinuate (47.37%), lobed, lobed to sinuate, serrate to sinuate, sinuate to entire. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in disagreement (97.89%), in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: developed (55.79%), underdeveloped, absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: absent; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular strongly curved (64.21%), tubular markedly curved.

Among some length classes, there were significant differences (p<0.05) in the otolith shape, anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges, cauda morphology, rostrum and antirostrum orientation and the antirostrum. Differences were found along the growth development in the dorsal and ventral edges.

 

 

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Shape: elliptic to lanceolated (78.57%), elliptic. Anterior region: lanceolated-round (71.43%), angular-round. Posterior region: angular-round (89.29%), round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: sinuate to entire (75%), sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in disagreement (71.43%), in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: underdeveloped (89.29%) or absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial (96.43%), or ostiocaudal; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: absent; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved.

There  were  significant  differences (p<0.05) among  otoliths  of  some  length  classes in the  shape,  anterior and posterior regions, ventral edge, sulcus acusticus opening, rostrum and antirostrum and antirostrum orientation and antirostrum. No differences were found along the otolith development.

 

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Shape: elliptic to lanceolated. Anterior region: peaked to lanceolated. Posterior region: angular-round. Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate. Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved.

The small number of otoliths did not permit statistical analysis of the data but their morphometric characteristics values are shown below:

 

 

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Shape: lanceolated. Anterior region: lanceolated. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: sinuate. Ventral edge: sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: developed. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved.

The small number of otoliths did not permit statistical analysis of the data but their morphometric characteristics values are shown below:

 

 

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Shape: hour glass. Posterior region: notched. Anterior region: notched. Dorsal edge: sinuate. Ventral edge: sinuate. Profile: plane-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: developed. Pseudorostrum: developed. Pseudo-antirostrum: underdeveloped. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostiocaudal; morphology: pseudo-archaeosulcoid; colliculum: holomorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: elliptic.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

 

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Shape: elliptic to lanceolated (65.22%), lanceolated, hour-glass. Anterior region: lanceolated-round (65.22%), notched or lanceolated. Posterior region: oblique to angled (35.87%), notched (32.61%), oblique-round (31.52%). Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire (64.13%), sinuate. Ventral edge: sinuate (53.26%), sinuate to entire. Profile: concave-convex (96.74%), plane-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: not in agreement (93.48%), in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: developed (77.17%), underdeveloped. Pseudorostrum: absent (48.91%), underdeveloped, sometimes developed. Pseudo-antirostrum: absent (48.91%), underdeveloped, sometimes developed. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial (50%), ostiocaudal (50%); morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: absent; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved (83.70%), tubular strongly curved.

Among the length classes, significant differences (p<0.05) were observed only for the otolith shape, anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges, cauda morphology, rostrum and antirostrum orientation, the antirostrum, pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum. Differences along the growth development were observed in the dorsal edge and the antirostrum.

 

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Shape: elliptic. Anterior region: peaked-round. Posterior region: angled-round. Dorsal edge: sinuate. Ventral edge: sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

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Shape: elliptic (72.41%), elliptic to rectangular, rectangular. Anterior region: peaked-round (62.07%), round. Posterior region: angled-round (48.28%), round, flattened. Dorsal edge: sinuate (51.72%), lobed to sinuate, sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (58.62%), sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: developed. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: horizontal (72.41%), descending; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: absent; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved (55.17%), tubular strongly curved.

Among some length classes, there were significant differences (p<0.05) in the dorsal edge, sulcus acusticus orientation and the cauda morphology. Differences were not found along the growth development.

 

 

 

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Shape: elliptic (50%), rectangular (50%). Anterior region: peaked-round (42.86%), flattened, angled-round, round. Posterior region: round (92.86%), angled-round. Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate (50%), sinuate, sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (50%), sinuate (50%). Profile: concave-convex (50%), plane-convex (50%). Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: developed. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: descending; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved (50%), tubular strongly curved (50%).

There were significant differences (p<0.05) among otoliths of some length classes in the otolith shape, anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges, cauda morphology and otolith profile. Differences along the growth development were found in the otolith's shape, anterior region, dorsal and ventral edges, cauda morphology and otolith profile.

 

 

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Shape: spindle-shaped. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to irregular. Ventral shape: crenate to irregular (50%), crenate (50%). Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: underdeveloped. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

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Shape: elliptic (75.82%), elliptic to lanceolated. Anterior region: peaked-round (43.96%), angled-round, lanceolated-round. Posterior region: angular-round (50.55%), round, peaked-round. Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate (63.74%), sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (50.55%), sinuate to entire, sinuate, lobed. Profile: concave-convex (63.74%), plane-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed (71.43%), underdeveloped. Antirostrum: absent (93.41%), underdeveloped. Pseudorostrum and pseudoantirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian (90.11%), median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved (74.73%), tubular strongly curved.

Statistical differences (p<0.05) among some length classes were obtained in the otolith's shape, anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges, sulcus acusticus position, cauda morphology, profile, rostrum and antirostrum. Along the growth development, statistical differences were found in the otolith's shape, anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges, the otolith profile and the rostrum.

 

 

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Shape: elliptic to lanceolated. Anterior region: lanceolated. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: sinuate to entire. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: developed. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

 

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Family SCIAENIDAE

This family presents different otolith shapes, but it is mainly characterized by the round large ostium and the curled tubular cauda.

 

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Shape: discoidal. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: entire (82.54%), sinuate to entire, lobed to sinuate. Ventral edge: entire (77.78%), sinuate to entire, lobed to sinuate. Profile: biconvex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostial (95.24%), para-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: lateral; cauda: tubular curled.

Differences (p<0.05) were obtained among some length classes for the otoliths' dorsal and ventral edges and the sulcus acusticus opening. Along the growth development only the ventral edge showed any significant difference.

 

 

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Shape: elliptic. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: entire (76.92%), sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: sinuate to entire (46.15%), entire, lobed to sinuate. Profile: biconvex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudoantirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: lateral; cauda: tubular strongly curved.

No differences (p<0.05) were found among some length classes or along the growth development.

 

 

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Shape: elliptic. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: oblique-round (57.89%), round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire (52.63%), entire, lobed, lobed to entire, lobed to sinuate. Ventral edge: entire (44.74%), sinuate to entire, lobed, lobed to entire, lobed to sinuate. Profile: plane-convex (81.58%), biconvex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: lateral; cauda: tubular curled (68.42%), tubular slightly curved, tubular strongly curved.

There were significant differences (p<0.05) among some length classes and along growth development for the posterior region, dorsal and ventral edges, cauda morphology and the otolith profile.

 

 

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Shape: oblong. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: oblique-round. Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate. Ventral edge: irregular to sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: oval; cauda: tubular strongly curved.

The otolith presents a dorsal notch in its medium region.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

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Shape: oblong. Anterior region: round (51.61%), oblique-round, flattened. Posterior region: flattened (83.87%), round, oblique-round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire (38.71%), lobed to entire (38.71%), lobed to sinuate, sinuate, entire. Ventral edge: entire (96.77%), sinuate to entire. Profile: plane-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: para-ostial (74.19%), pseudo-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: lateral; cauda: tubular strongly curved.

Differences were found (p<0.05) among some length classes and along the growth development for the anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edge and the sulcus acusticus opening.

 

 

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Shape: elliptic. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: entire (85%), round. Dorsal edge: entire (82.5%), sinuate to entire, lobed. Ventral edge: sinuate to entire (52%), entire, lobed to entire, lobed. Profile: biconvex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudoantirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median (65%), supramedian; orientation: ascending (77.50%), horizontal; opening: para-ostial (87.50%), pseudo-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: lateral; cauda: tubular curled.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes and along the growth development were found in the: posterior region, dorsal and ventral edges, sulcus acusticus position, orientation and opening.

 

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Shape: oblong. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: round (69.23%), oblique-round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire (61.54%), sinuate, entire. Ventral edge: lobed to sinuate (53.85%), lobed to entire, lobed. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: rectangular; cauda: tubular curled.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes were found in relation to the otolith's posterior region, dorsal and ventral edges. Differences along the growth development were found only for the ventral edge.

 

 

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Shape: bullet-shaped. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: oblique to peaked (63.51%), picked-round. Dorsal edge: entire (75.61%), sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: entire (82.93%), sinuate to entire. Profile: plane-convex (93.90%), concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostial (51.22%), para-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: lateral; cauda: tubular curled.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes were found in posterior region, dorsal and ventral edges and the otolith profile. Along the growth development differences were found in posterior region, dorsal edge and the otolith profile.

 

 

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Shape: bullet-shaped. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: oblique. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: sinuate to entire. Profile: biconvex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: ascending; opening: pseudo-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: lateral; cauda: tubular markedly curve.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

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Shape: pyriform. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire (54.55%). Ventral edge: entire (81.82%). Profile: biconvex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: bent-concave; cauda: tubular strongly curved

Differences among some length classes (p<0.05) were found for the ventral edge of the otoliths. No differences appear along growth development.

 

 

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Shape: oblong. Anterior region: oblique-round (95.45%), blunt-round. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire (56.82%), entire, lobed to entire, lobed to sinuate. Ventral edge: entire (81.82%), sinuate to entire. Profile: biconvex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: slightly ascending; opening: pseudo-ostial (96.59%), para-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: lateral; cauda: tubular curled.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes were found in the otolith's anterior region, dorsal and ventral edges and the sulcus acusticus opening. Along the growth development differences appeared in the dorsal and ventral edge of the otolith.

 

 

 

 

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Shape: rectangular. Anterior region: peaked-round. Posterior region: oblique-round. Dorsal edge: entire. Ventral edge: entire. Anterior edge: entire. Posterior edge: entire. Profile: plane-convex. Rostrum: absent (68.89%), underdeveloped. Antirostrum: developed. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: ascending; opening: pseudo-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: discoidal; cauda: tubular curled.

Differences (p<0.5) among some length classes and along the growth development were found only in the otolith's rostrum.

 

 

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Shape: rectangular. Anterior region: double-peaked. Posterior region: oblique. Dorsal edge: entire (81.25%), sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: entire. Anterior edge: irregular. Posterior edge: entire. Profile: plane-convex. Rostrum: absent. Antirostrum: underdeveloped. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: ascending; opening: pseudo-ostiocaudal; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: discoidal; cauda: tubular curled.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes and along the growth development were found only in the dorsal edge.

 

 

 

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Shape: discoidal to rectangular. Anterior region: round (91.06%), oblique-round. Posterior region: oblique-round (78.05%), round. Dorsal edge: entire (73.17%), sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: entire (87.80%), sinuate to entire. Profile: biconvex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostial (60.16%), para-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: lateral; cauda: tubular curled.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes were found in the anterior and posterior regions, dorsal and ventral edges and the sulcus acusticus opening. Along the growth development differences were found in posterior region, dorsal and ventral edges and the sulcus acusticus opening.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

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Shape: oval. Anterior region: round. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: entire. Ventral edge: entire. Profile: biconvex. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: pseudo-ostial (60%), para-ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: discoidal; cauda: tubular curled.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

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Family SCOMBRIDAE

 

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Shape: rectangular. Anterior region: flattened. Posterior region: oblique. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: sinuate. Anterior edge: sinuate to entire. Posterior edge: sinuate. Profile: flattened. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Rostrum and antirostrum: absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: elliptic.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

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Shape: triangular. Anterior region: peaked. Posterior region: oblique. Anterior dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate. Posterior dorsal edge: sinuate. Ventral edge: crenate to sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in disagreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: developed. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: slightly ascending; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: elliptic.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

Clique para ampliar

 

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Shape: rectangular. Anterior region: peaked. Posterior region: oblique (68.09%), oblique-round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire (76.60%), sinuate, entire. Ventral edge: sinuate to entire (80.85%), entire. Posterior edge: sinuate to entire (74.47%), entire. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: underdeveloped (85.11%), developed or absent. Antirostrum: developed (63.83%), underdeveloped, absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial (85.11%), ostiocaudal; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved (53.19%), tubular strongly curved. In this species, the colliculum exceeds the anterior edge of the otolith.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes were found in: the posterior region, the dorsal, ventral and posterior edges, the sulcus acusticus opening, cauda morphology, the rostrum and antirostrum. Along the growth development differences were found in the dorsal edge and the sulcus acusticus opening.

 

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Shape: triangular. Anterior region: peaked-round. Posterior region: oblique. Anterior dorsal edge: entire. Posterior dorsal edge: lobed. Ventral edge: crenate to sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: not in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: developed. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: supramedian; orientation: slightly ascending; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: elliptic.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Family SERRANIDAE 

The otolith's shape can be oblong, elliptic or fusiform. The anterior region is commonly peaked-round. The antirostrum when present is underdeveloped.

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Shape: elliptic. Anterior region: peaked round (94.29%), peaked. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: entire. Ventral edge: entire (91.43%), sinuate to entire. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular straight (94.29%), tubular slightly curved.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes and also along the growth development were found in: anterior region, ventral edge and cauda morphology.

 

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Shape: elliptic. Anterior region: peaked-round. Posterior region: peaked-round. Dorsal edge: lobed to sinuate. Ventral edge: sinuate to entire. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: does not apply. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular strongly curved.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Shape: fusiform (83.33%), lanceolated. Anterior region: peaked-round (83.33%), peaked. Posterior region: peaked-round (50%), peaked (50%). Dorsal edge: entire (50%), sinuate to entire, sinuate. Ventral edge: sinuate to entire (58.33%), sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: underdeveloped. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes were found in: anterior and dorsal edge of the otolith. Along the growth development differences were detected in the dorsal edge.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Shape: fusiform. Anterior region: peaked-round. Posterior region: round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire (50%), entire, sinuate, lobed to sinuate. Ventral edge: sinuate to entire (63.04%), entire, lobed to sinuate, sinuate. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: underdeveloped or absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: slightly curved.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes were found in: dorsal and ventral edge. Along the growth development differences were found only in the ventral edge of the otoliths.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

Clique para ampliar 

 

Clique para ampliar

 

Shape: elliptic to lanceolated. Anterior region: peaked-round. Posterior region: angular-round. Dorsal edge: sinuate to entire. Ventral edge: entire (85%), sinuate to entire. Profile: concave-convex. Rostrum and antirostrum orientation: in agreement. Rostrum: developed. Antirostrum: underdeveloped or absent. Pseudorostrum and pseudo-antirostrum: absent. Sulcus acusticus: position: median; orientation: horizontal; opening: ostial; morphology: heterosulcoid; colliculum: heteromorphic; ostium: funnel like; cauda: tubular slightly curved.

Differences (p<0.05) among some length classes and along the growth development were found in the ventral edge of the otolith.

The morphometric data of the specimen are given below:

 

 

Clique para ampliar

 

IDENTIFICATION KEY

Family CARANGIDAE

Genus Decapterus

The anterior region is lanceolated-round or angular-round; the dorsal and ventral edges are sinuated to entire; the antirostrum is underdeveloped or absent.........……………………………………………………….……………...Decapterus punctatus

The anterior region is peaked-round; the dorsal and ventral edges are lobed to sinuate; the antirostrum is absent………...........……………………………………………………………………………………………..Decapterus tabl

Genus Selene

The posterior region is angular-round, with a prominent tip in the ventral posterior; the cauda of the sulcus acusticus ending closer to the ventral edge.........…………………………………………………………….. Selene setapinnis

The posterior region is round; the cauda of the sulcus acusticus ending furthermost from the ventral edge……...........……...................…………………………………………………………………………….……Selene vomer

Family SCIAENIDAE

Genus Cynoscion   

Presents a hump on the dorsal margin, towards the collum (where the ostium and the cauda join); strongly curved tubular cauda..….……………………………………………………………………….…………….…….….. Cynoscion guatucupa

Presents a slight ledge on the dorsal edge, toward the collum; curled tubular cauda…………..………Cynoscion jamaicensis

The otolith's shape is oblong and presents a deep dorsal notch in the medium region of its dorsal margin……………………………………………………………………………………………………….Cynoscion virescens

Genus Menticirrhus    

Ventral region with straight in the middle portion of the cauda; lower ostium wall longer than the upper.....................................................................................................................................................Menticirrhus americanus

Ventral  region  with  a  notch  in  the middle  portion  of  the  cauda;  lower  and  upper  ostium  wall  of   equal size………………………………………………………………………………………………………...Menticirrhus littoralis

Genus Stellifer  

The rostrum is absent or underdeveloped; the antirostrum is developed; the ostium is as wide as it is high; the posterior dorsal margin is developed..........................................................................................................................Stellifer brasiliensis

The rostrum is absent; the antirostrum is underdeveloped; has a tip in the upper anterior region; the ostium is higher than it is wide..................................................................................................................................................….Stellifer rastrifer

Genus Umbrina  

Discoidal to rectangular shape; the ostium is lateral, thus presents well marked bends in the wall, both above and below its connection to the cauda....…...……………………………………………..………………………………....Umbrina canosai

Oval shape; the ostium is discoidal, the lower bend is larger and rounder……………………………………Umbrina coroides

Family SERRANIDAE

Genus Diplectrum            

Elliptic or lanceolated shape; the antirostrum is absent; tubular strongly curved cauda............................Diplectrum formosum

Fusiform shape; the antirostrum is underdeveloped; tubular slightly curved cauda...........…………………Diplectrum radiale

 

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

The idea of this otolith collection arose many years ago in the mind of the now deceased Prof. Gelso Vazzoler who realized its importance. The number of otoliths has gradually increased in the course of several projects carried out with the collaboration of researchers and students from various research institutions. The organization of the collection and the analysis of the otoliths began its consolidation four years ago when substantial financial support was received from the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (FAPESP Process-2010/51631-2) which permitted us to improve the laboratory and the equipment and to add to the human resources of the LABIC. Many thanks to everyone who has participated in this long process, especially to Jessica Falchi Caçador, Luana Kushnir Safranauskas, Thais Tiemi Mizutami, Karina Lie Wakassuqui, Amanda Alves Camargo, Deborah Faria Nardi, Marina Casare Mussolini and Alexandre Y. Gomes Arackawa, who (all of whom) helped by making the drawings and taking the measurements of the otoliths.

Very special thanks are due to Dr. Carlos A. Assis for his valuable comments improving so much some otoliths descriptions and the shape of this document.

 

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(Manuscript received 07 May 2013; revised
11 January 2014; accepted 29 January 2014)

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