Morphometrics and processing yield of Cucumaria frondosa (Holothuroidea) from the St. Lawrence Estuary, Canada

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Date: Jan. 22, 2021
From: PLoS ONE(Vol. 16, Issue 1)
Publisher: Public Library of Science
Document Type: Report
Length: 7,244 words
Lexile Measure: 1510L

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Abstract :

Sea cucumber Cucumaria frondosa have highly variable whole body mass and length, and are usually sold to Asian markets as dried gutted body wall. Understanding the relation between size and yield of dry product is essential for resource conservation and for economic purposes. In this study, stock-specific mass and length recovery rates were estimated for C. frondosa captured by dredging or diving at various depths and seasons on the South shore of the St. Lawrence Estuary, along Gaspé Peninsula, and processed in a commercial plant. The processing yield in dry product mass per sea cucumber was more than 1.5 times larger for sea cucumbers collected at 26-47 m depth compared to those collected at 9-16 m depth. Within each strata, there was little variation in the processed body mass, seasonally or spatially. Recovery rates based on gutted mass for this stock (13.4â14.5%) varied little among depths and seasons, despite observed seasonal and bathymetric variation in reproductive status. In contrast, recovery rates based on whole body mass and length were highly variable both seasonally and spatially. Stress related to dredging or post-capture handling induced important variable body contraction and water content, leading to variation in body length, mass and shape of sea cucumbers having the same processed body mass. Gutted mass was the best metric to predict processed body mass and to estimate size whereas whole body length was the least reliable. New stock-specific information on variability of body mass, length, and recovery rates induced by capture, and on seasonal and bathymetric variation in reproductive status and processing yields will be used for the design of future stock assessment surveys, and for stock conservation.

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Source Citation   

Gale Document Number: GALE|A649336151