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Migration and habitat use of the tropical eels Anguilla marmorata and A. bicolor pacifica in Vietnam
Arai, T.; Chino, N.; Le, D.Q. (2013). Migration and habitat use of the tropical eels Anguilla marmorata and A. bicolor pacifica in Vietnam. Aquat. Ecol. 47(1): 57-65.
In: Aquatic Ecology. Springer: Dordrecht; London; Boston. ISSN 1386-2588, more
Peer reviewed article  

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    Catadromous fish; Estuarine environment; Evolution; Life history; Migration; Anguilla bicolor pacifica Schmidt, 1928 [WoRMS]; Anguilla marmorata Quoy & Gaimard, 1824 [WoRMS]; Brackish water
Author keywords
    Tropical eel

Authors  Top 
  • Arai, T.
  • Chino, N.
  • Le, D.Q.

    The patterns of use of marine and freshwater habitats by the tropical anguillid eels Anguilla marmorata and A. bicolor pacifica were examined by analysing the otolith strontium (Sr) and calcium (Ca) concentrations of yellow (immature) and silver (mature) stage eels collected in Vietnamese waters. In A. marmorata, the change in the Sr:Ca ratios outside the high Sr:Ca core was generally divided into three patterns: (1) typical catadromous life history pattern; (2) constant residence in brackish water; and (3) habitat shifting between sea and brackish waters with no freshwater life. In A. bicolor pacifica, no eels had a general life history as freshwater residents. The eels were also divided into three patterns: (1) constant residence in sea water; (2) constantly living in brackish water; and (3) habitat shifting from brackish to sea water with no freshwater residence. The mean Sr:Ca ratio value after recruitment to coastal waters ranged from 1.73 to 5.67 × 10-3 (mean 3.2 × 10-3) in A. marmorata and from 2.53 to 6.32 × 10-3 (mean 4.3 × 10-3) in A. bicolor pacifica. The wide range of otolith Sr:Ca ratios in both species indicated that the habitat use of these tropical eels was facultative among fresh, brackish, and marine waters during their growth phases after recruitment to coastal areas. Tropical eel species may have the same behavioural plasticity as temperate anguillid species regarding whether to enter freshwater or to remain in estuarine and marine environments.

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