The jumbo flying squid, Dosidicus gigas, support an important squid fishery off the Exclusive Economic Zone of Chilean waters. However, we only have limited information about their biology. In this study, age, growth and population structure of D. gigas were studied using statoliths from 333 specimens (386 females and 147 males) randomly sampled in the Chinese squid jigging surveys from 2007 to 2008 off the Exclusive Economic Zone of Chile. Mantle lengths (MLs) of the sample ranged from 206 to 702 mm, and their ages were estimated from 150 to 307 days for females and from 127 to 302 days for males. At least two spawning groups were identified, the main spawning peak tended to occur between August and November (austral spring group), and the secondary peak appeared during March to June (austral autumn group). The ML-age relationship was best modelled by a linear function for the austral spring group and a power function for the austral autumn group, and the body weight (BW)-age relationship was best described by an exponential function for both the groups. Instantaneous relative growth rates and absolute growth rates for ML and BW did not differ significantly between the two groups. The growth rate of D. gigas tended to be high at young stages, and then decreased after the sub-adult stage (>180 days old). This study suggests large spatial and temporal variability in key life history parameters of D. gigas, calling for the collection of more data with fine spatial and temporal scales to further improve our understanding of the fishery biology of D. gigas.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/yong_chen/5/