The Importance of Reproductive Dynamics in Fish Stock Assessments

Peter R. Witthames*, C. Tara Marshall

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

10 Citations (Scopus)


We provide evidence that two assumptions in Beverton and Holt's "On the Dynamics of Exploited Fish Populations" are incorrect: egg production is not directly proportional to spawning-stock biomass, nor do all eggs have an equal chance of survival. The assumptions are further compromised by the effect of adult condition on maternal and paternal gamete production and by fisheries effects on the population of both prey and the exploited population. Issues concerning the selection of important life history characters such as sex ratio, growth rate and reproductive potential interact with climate change and fishing mortality. We also discuss the use of indices and a fishery-independent method to investigate and forecast stock reproductive potential and to explore the two assumptions further.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in Fisheries Science
Subtitle of host publication50 years on from Beverton and Holt
EditorsAndy Payne, John Cotter, Ted Potter
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781444302653
ISBN (Print)1405170832, 9781405170833
Publication statusPublished - 9 Feb 2009


  • Fisheries influencing ecosystem and genetic make-up of exploited species
  • Fishery effects on population structure
  • Fishery-independent methods
  • Interaction between genotype and environment
  • Maternal effects related to age
  • Paternal effects related to age
  • Reproductive dynamics and their importance in fish stock assessments
  • Stock-recruitment relationship


Dive into the research topics of 'The Importance of Reproductive Dynamics in Fish Stock Assessments'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this