Turkish Journal of Zoology




This study provides baseline data on the mullid fish assemblages based on their morphometries on a shelf of the most oligotrophic water of the Mediterranean Sea, Antalya Gulf. The distribution of fish abundances, biomasses, total length, sex composition, growth parameters, and ecological fish assemblages was studied along three transects (each had a series of bottom depths of 10, 25, 75, 125, and 200 m) between spring 2014 and winter 2015, representing the winter, spring, summer and autumn seasons. Four different species of the Mullidae family: the red mullet (Mullus barbatus), the striped red mullet (M. surmuletus), the golden-banded goatfish (Upeneus moluccensis) and the Por's goatfish (U. pori) were found and subjected to distributional analyses. Excluding M. surmuletus, all of the mullid fish were commonly and abundantly found. There was a definite depth segregation among their distributions, but no seasonal differences occurred. Mediterranean meadows are attractive areas for mullid species, especially for M. surmelatus. The spatial distributional pattern of U. pori was in complete contrast to that of M. surmuletus. Overall, the females (F) outnumbered the males (M) significantly in space (region and depth) and time (season). The morphometric parameters (length-related and growth parameters) were estimated to increase comparatively from east to west in the Mediterranean Sea. Ecologically, the mullid assemblages depended on the seafloor depth, bottom type (habitat and sedimentary characteristics), water productivity and dissolved oxygen content and salinity, and benthic composition.


Mullids, distribution, spatiotemporal, ecology, eastern Mediterranean Sea

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