Species composition, length-weight relationship and condition factor of landed fish catch of Elechi Creek, Niger Delta
Information on length-weight relationship and condition of landed fish catch at Elechi Creek is inadequate despite different human activities taking place there. Fish specimens were procured twice monthly between April and September 2012 from artisanal fishers and middlemen at three landing sites (stations) in study area. Lengths and weights of fish were determined to nearest centimeter and gram using standard methods. Fulton’s condition factor was estimated following Bagenal and Tesh method to determine health status of fish. One thousand specimens comprising of 15 species from 15 families were examined. Tilapia guineensis (Cichlidae) (150, 15%) recorded highest number while Microchirus boscanion (Oleidae) accounted for lowest number (23, 2.3%). Sizes of fishes included small-sized (5.3 cm to 7.6 cm) to large-sized fishes (23.8 cm to 29.4 cm). Considering stations, the highest number of fishes was recorded in Station 3 (438 specimens) while the lowest was in Station 1 (257 specimens). Chrysichthys nigrodigitatus (b=3.75), Mugil cephalus (b=3.02) and Atherina formis (b=3.46) exhibited positive allometry growth while Pseudotolithus elongatus (b=2.55), Eleotris africana (b=2.79), Sardinella maderemsis (b=2.04), Periophthalmus barbarous (b=2.77), Microchirus poscanion had negative allometry growth. Five species of fish had condition factor below 1 which signified that Elechi Creek was not conducive for their growth.
Keywords: Fish catch, growth pattern, wellbeing, anthropogenic inputs, species