Argentine anchovy (Engraulis anchoita) stock identification and incipient exploitation in southern Brazil
The Argentine anchovy (Engraulis anchoita) is an essential species in the pelagic ecosystem of the southwest Atlantic Ocean, and a potentially important fishery resource. Exploitation has recently started in southern Brazil, so it requires a better understanding of their structure and population dynamics. This work aims to update the information on the population identification of E. anchoita. Parameters such as age and size composition, length-at-age data and other parameters using sagittae otoliths were used to compare anchovy of the continental shelf between 20° and 32°S. The results indicate the existence of different populations in the southeastern and southern regions of Brazil: the bonaerense stock in southern Brazil is shared with Argentina and Uruguay and exhibits migratory behavior, while in the southeast there is a population confined to this region and shows different population characteristics. This has implications for the management of this species and should be taken into account by the institutions responsible for the assessment and management of fisheries in Brazil.