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Abstract

104 specimens of notothenioid fishes of five species (Patagonotothen longipes, P. tessellata, Champsocephalus esox, Cottoperca trigloides and Patagonotothen brevicauda) caught at two sites in the Beagle Channel (Magellanic sub-region, sub-Antarctica) were examined for the presence of thorny-headed worms (Acanthocephala). Representatives of three fish species, Patagonotothen longipes, P. tessellata, and Champsocephalus esox, were infected. Fishes caught at the eastern mouth of the channel were infected with 180 echinorhynchids representing three species, Aspersentis johni (the most numerous species), Heterosentis heteracanthus, and Hypoechinorhynchus magellanicus, and only 12 cystacanths of four polymorphids, Andracantha baylisi, Corynosoma sp., Corynosoma beaglense, and Corynosoma evae. Patagonotothen longipes was the most highly infected in the eastern mouth of the channel (prevalence 85%, maximum intensity 26). Aspersentis johni was the dominant parasite species in this host (prevalence 85%, mean abundance 4.00, maximum intensity 18) and H. heteracanthus was the sub-dominant one (prevalence 50%, mean abundance 2.60, maximum intensity 25). The infections of C. esox were the most diverse (six parasite species - three echinorhynchids and three polymorphids). Fish caught near the city of Ushuaia were infected only with six cystacanths of C. evae (intensity one). Taking into account the whole sample, C. evae was the most abundant polymorphid, represented by 10 of 18 specimens found. Three species, H. heteracanthus, A. baylisi and C. evae, have been previously reported from the low western Antarctic (H. heteracanthus also from the Kerguelen sub-region of sub-Antarctic), remaining four species seem to be endemics of the Magellanic sub-region of sub-Antarctic.
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Abstract

Notothenia coriiceps, N.rossii and Lepidonotothen nudifrons were sampled from Admiralty Bay from March to November 1997 and from January to February 1999. The ratio of N.coriiceps to N.rossii individuals in catches regularly increased during 22 years from 0.4 in 1977 to 9.5 in 1999. Oving to its reproductive strategy and avoidance of shallow waters N.rossii may be more vulnerable to overfishing. The condition factor was the most stable (CV 6 -10%), variations in the of hepatosomatic index and index of stomach fullness were intermediate (21 -38%and 40 -43%,respectively), and the gonadosomatic index was the most variable (65 -100%). Lack of seasonality in two somatic indices (condition factor and index of stomach fullness) in N.coriiceps adults is a direct effect of high food availability and unlimited food detection all year round. In contrast, the seasonality of a reproductive index (gonadosomatic index) of these fish is a response to the highly seasonal trophic conditions for pelagic larvae.
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