Actinopteri (ray-finned fishes) > Gadiformes
(Cods) > Merlucciidae
Etymology: Merluccius: Latin, mar, maris = the sea + Latin, lucius = pike (Ref. 45335). More on author: Guichenot.
A different species/subspecies is recognized on the Peruvian coasts Etropus peruanus Ginsburg, 1954, that is recognized in FishBase as a provisionally valid species. More studies are needed to clearly differentiate it (March 2021).
Environment: milieu / climate zone / depth range / distribution range
Marine; bathydemersal; oceanodromous; depth range 50 - 500 m (Ref. 1371), usually - m (Ref. ). Deep-water; 0°C - ; 5°S - 46°S, 81°W - 69°E (Ref. 54583)
Southeast Pacific: off the coast of Chile from Arica to Chiloé Island.
Length at first maturity / Size / Weight / Age
Maturity: Lm ?, range 32 - ? cm
Max length : 87.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 1371); common length : 50.0 cm TL male/unsexed; (Ref. 1371)
soft rays: 36 - 42;
Vertebrae: 49 - 53. Caudal fin margin usually concave. Color is silvery on back, silvery whitish on belly. M. gayi gayi and M. gayi peruanus differ by the total number of vertebrae, total number of gill rakers and relative length of head (Ref. 1371).
Occurs from the shallow continental shelf to the upper continental slope (Ref. 1371). Sometimes found off the bottom or in midwater (Ref. 1371). Migrates vertically to midwater at night to feed on fishes, squids and euphausiids (Ref. 27363). Moves to southern coastal areas in summer and migrates to northern deeper waters (200-500 m depth) in winter and spring (Ref. 27363). Spawning occurs at the end of the winter and during the southern spring (Ref. 58452). Marketed fresh and frozen (Ref. 1371) and eaten steamed, fried, boiled and microwaved (Ref. 9988). Also utilized as fishmeal (Ref. 1371).
Life cycle and mating behavior
Maturity | Reproduction | Spawning | Eggs | Fecundity | Larvae
Cohen, D.M., T. Inada, T. Iwamoto and N. Scialabba, 1990. FAO species catalogue. Vol. 10. Gadiform fishes of the world (Order Gadiformes). An annotated and illustrated catalogue of cods, hakes, grenadiers and other gadiform fishes known to date. FAO Fish. Synop. 125(10). Rome: FAO. 442 p. (Ref. 1371)
IUCN Red List Status (Ref. 124695)
Threat to humans
Fisheries: highly commercial
ReferencesAquacultureAquaculture profileStrainsGeneticsAllele frequenciesHeritabilityDiseasesProcessingNutrientsMass conversion
Estimates based on models
Preferred temperature (Ref. 115969
): 9.3 - 14, mean 10.9 °C (based on 38 cells).
Phylogenetic diversity index (Ref. 82805
= 0.5000 [Uniqueness, from 0.5 = low to 2.0 = high].
Bayesian length-weight: a=0.01148 (0.00463 - 0.02844), b=3.07 (2.86 - 3.28), in cm total length, based on LWR estimates for this species & (Sub)family-body (Ref. 93245
Trophic level (Ref. 69278
): 4.3 ±0.6 se; based on diet studies.
Resilience (Ref. 120179
): Medium, minimum population doubling time 1.4 - 4.4 years (K=0.1-0.2; tm=2).
Vulnerability (Ref. 59153
): High vulnerability (61 of 100) .
Nutrients (Ref. 124155
): Calcium = 8.69 [3.21, 23.71] mg/100g ; Iron = 0.279 [0.120, 0.585] mg/100g ; Protein = 17.9 [16.7, 19.1] % ; Omega3 = 0.216 [0.113, 0.418] g/100g ; Selenium = 27.7 [12.8, 61.3] μg/100g ; VitaminA = 13.6 [3.7, 50.8] μg/100g ; Zinc = 0.22 [0.15, 0.34] mg/100g (wet weight); based on nutrient studies.