Population structure and reproductive aspects of puffer fish Sphoeroides annulatus (Jenyns, 1842) (Osteichthyes: Tetraodontidae), landed in Teacapán, Sinaloa, Mexico
The puffer fish Sphoeroides annulatus is an important target species for the artisanal fishing fleets of NW Mexico. To obtain information on population structure of the local stock, we determined the total length and total weight (TL and TW) ranges, sex ratio and reproductive stages of 745 specimens of this species, landed from May 2010 to April 2011 in Teacapán, Sinaloa, NW Mexico. TL ranged from 15 to 40 cm and TW from 100 to 1600 g. There were no differences between mean TL (27.41 ± 4.14 cm) and TW (534.5 ± 226.0 g) of males and females respectively. Sex ratio was not significantly different (χ2 = 0.03, P > 0.05) from 1F:1M. The length-weight relationship for both sexes was TW = 0.044TL2.815, R² = 0.895. The value of the slope b was significantly lower than 3 (P < 0.05), and indicated negative allometric growth. The distribution of maturity stages indicated one main reproductive period from June to September and one less intense, from November to December for females, and in December for males. Size at first maturity (L50%) of females was 26.52 cm and that of males was 27.41 cm.