Spawning Season, Spawning and Nursing Grounds Identification of Asian Seabass, Lates calcarifer (Bloch, 1790) in the Bay of Bengal, Bangladesh




Lates calcarifer, Spawning ground, Nursery ground, Bay of Bengal, Gonadosomatic Index


The Asian seabass is a coastal perciform fish, faces limitations in natural recruitment due to a lack of suitable spawning and nursing habitats in the coastal waters of Bangladesh. This study aimed to uncover the spawning season, as well as spawning and nursery grounds, for seabass in the Bay of Bengal, Bangladesh. The research employed direct seabass collection, supported by the Gonadosomatic index and histological study, to identify the spawning phase. Findings revealed that seabass spawning aligns closely with the lunar cycle, with spontaneous spawning occurring during the new and full moon during the transitional monsoon period (April-June). Local fishermen have been harvesting seabass in the Moheskhali channel for over 50 years. A total of 762 running ripe males and females were captured from spawning grounds, exhibiting a male-to-female sex ratio of 4:1. Approximately 80% of females were observed in egg-releasing condition, with some partially spent and others initiating egg-laying post-capture without abdominal pressure. The peak spawning period was in May, with the entire spawning season spanning from April to June. Among 17 sampling sites, three were identified as seabass spawning grounds (Fadarchar, Bukkhilanirchar, and Barchar), while eight were identified as nursery grounds (SM para, Nuniarchara, Ghativanga, Chowfaldandi, Ramu, Gomatoli, Dulahazara, and Badarkhali). Seabass nursery periods extended from May to September, with the catch per unit effort of seabass larvae in nursery grounds ranging from 50-80 individuals/hour. The study underscores the need for habitat conservation and management to enhance reproductive and recruitment success, ultimately enhancing Asian seabass populations in Bangladesh.


Ahmed. (2004). Soil quality analysis and considerations in the selection of sites for sustainable aquaculture in the south-east coast of Chittagong specially Halishahar area. MSc. Thesis, IMS, CU, p. 75.

Ahmed, M.K. (1983). A checklist of prawn fauna of Bangladesh with some new records, Res. Reports No 7. Freshwater Fish Res. St. Chandpur, Bangladesh, p. 9.

Ahsan, D.A., Naser, M.N., Bhaumik, U., Hazra, S., Bhattacharya, S.B. (2014). Migration, spawning patterns and conservation of Hilsa Shad (Tenualosa ilisha) in Bangladesh and India. Ecosystems for Life: A Bangladesh-India Initiative, IUCN. p. 95.

Atiullah. (1976). Studies on the biology of Lates calacarifer and its fishery in the Northeast part of the Bay of Bengal. M.Sc. thesis, Institute of Marine Science, University of Chittagong. p. 225.

Ayson, E.G., Ayson, F.G. (2012). Reproductive biology of Asian seabass Lates calcarifer. In Jerry Dean, R. (Eds.) Biology and culture Asian seabass Lates calcarifer. CRC press, Boca Raton, FL, USA. 67-76 pp.

Bhatia, U., Kungvankij, P. (1971). Distribution and abundance of seabass fry in coastal area of the provinces facing Indian Ocean. Annual report, Phuket Marine Fisheries Station, p. 14.

Blaber, S.J.M. (2000). Tropical Estuarine Fishes: Ecology, exploitation and conservation, Blackwell Science, Oxford.

Bloch, M.E. (1790). Naturgeschichte der ausländischen Fische. Morino, Berlin. Vol. 4, i–xii+1–128, 217-252 pp.

Boyd. (1989). Water quality management and aeration in shrimp farming, Fisheries and allied aquaculture department, series No. 2. Allied aquaculture Experimental station, Alabama University. Alabama, 70 pp.

Das, N.G. (2000). Development of breeding technology of Bhetki (Lates calcarifer). Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council (BARC), 18 pp.

Davis, T.L.O. (1984). Estimation of fecundity in barramundi Lates calcarifer (Bloch), using an automatic particle counter. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research, 35(1), 111-118.

Davis, T.L.O. (1985). Seasonal changes in gonad maturity, and abundance of larvae and early juveniles of Barramundi, Lates calcarifer (Bloch), in Van Diemen Gulf and the Gulf of Carpentaria. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research, 36, 177-190.

Davis, T.L.O. (1986). Migration patterns in barramundi, Lates calcarifer (Bloch), in Van Diemen Gulf, Australia, with estimates of fishing mortality in specific areas. Fisheries Research, 4, 243-58.

De, G, K. (1971). On the biology of post larvae juvenile stages of Lates calcarifer (Bloch). Journal of the Indian Fisheries Association, 1(2), 51-64.

Edwards, R.R.C. (1973). Production ecology of two Caribbean marine ecosystems. II, Metabolism and energy flow. Estuarine and Coastal Marine Science, 1, 319-333.

Ellis, T., North, B., Scott, A.P., Bromage, N.R., Porter, M., Gadd, D. (2002). The relationships between stocking density and welfare in farmed rainbow trout. Journal of Fish Biology, 61, 493-531.

FAO. (1985). Pilot survey of set bag net fisheries of Bangladesh. BOBP/WP/34. FAO, Rome. 26 pp.

Frost, L.A., Evans, B.S., Jerry, D.R. (2006). Loss of genetic diversity due to hatchery culture practices in barramundi (Lates calcarifer). Aquaculture, 3, 1056-1064.

Garrett, R.N. (1986). Reproduction in Queensland Barramundi (Lates calcarifer). Management of wild and cultured seabass, Barramundi (Lates calcarifer). Proceedings of an international workshop, Darwin: 38-43 pp.

Grey, D. L. (1986). An Overview of Lates calcarifer in Australia and Asia. Management of wild and cultured Seabass/Barramundi (Lates Calcarifer). Proceeding of an international workshop, Darwin: 15-21 pp.

Han, M. H. (1978). The reproductive biology of dab, Limanda limanda, in the North Sea: Gonadosomatic index, hepatosomatic index and condition factors. Journal of Fish Biology, 13, 369-378.

Haque, M.A., Hossain, M.I., Uddin, S.A., Dey, P.K. (2019). Review on distribution, culture practices, food and feeding, brood development and artificial breeding of seabass, Lates calcarifer (Bloch 1790): Bangladesh perspective. Research in Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, 6(3), 405-414.

Haroon, A.K.Y., Zaher, M., Sayed, I.A. (2005). Development of broods for mass seed production of seabass (Lates calcarifer), Marine Fisheries and Technology Station, Cox’s Bazar. Bangladesh Fisheries Research Institute, Mymensingh. 113-117 pp.

Hossain, M.S. (2001). Biological aspects of the coastal and marine environment of Bangladesh. Journal of Ocean & Coastal Management, 44 (3-4), 261-282.

Hossain, M.S., Sarker, S., Chowdhury, S.R., Sharifuzzaman, S.M. (2014). Discovering spawning ground of Hilsa shad (Tenualosa ilisha) in the coastal water of Bangladesh. Ecological Modelling, 282, 59-68.

Huda, M.S., Haque, M.E., Babul, A.S., Shil, N.C. (2003). Field guide to finfishes of Sundarban, Aquatic resources division, Sundarban, Boyra, Khulna, Bangladesh.

Humason, G.L. (1972). Specific staining methods. Animal tissue techniques. WH Freeman and Co., San Francisco, CA, 183-185 pp.

Islam, M.A., Bosu, A., Hasan, M.M., Yasmin, F., Khan, A.B.S., Akhter, M., Ullah, M.R., Karim, E., Rashid, M.H., Mahmud, Y. (2023). Culture technique of seabass, Lates calcarifer in Asia: A review. International Journal of Science and Technology Research Archive, 4(1), 6-17.

Kamal. (1982). Studies on the green mussel, Perna viridis inhabiting Moheshkhali Channel, Bay of Bengal. M.Sc. thesis. Institute of Marine Science, University of Chittagong.

Katersky, R.S., Carter, C.G. (2005). Growth efficiency of juvenile barramundi, Lates calcarifer, at high temperatures. Aquaculture, 250(3-4), 775-780.

Krishna, P.V., Panchakshari, V., Prabhavathi, K. (2016). Feeding Habits and Stomach Contents of Asian seabass Lates calcarifer from Nizampatnam Coast, Andhra Pradesh, India. International Journal of Advanced Research, 4(4), 168-172.

Lim, L.C., Heng, H.H., Lee, H.B. (1986). The induced breeding of Sea bass, Lates calcarifer (Bloch) in Singapore. Singapore journal of primary industries, 14, 81-95.

Lowerre-Barbieri, S.K., Brown-Peterson, N.J., Murua, H., Tomkiewicz, J., Wyanski, D., Saborido-Rey, F. (2011). Emerging issues and methodological advances in fisheries reproductive biology. Marine and Coastal Fisheries: Dynamics, Management, and Ecosystem Science, 3, 32-51.

Mahmood, N., Khan, Y.S.A. (1980). On the occurrence of post larvae and juvenile penaeid prawn at Bakkhali estuary and adjacent coastal area of Cox’s Bazar with notes on their utilization in Aquaculture. Final report, research program, UGC, Dhaka: 26.

Maneewongsa, S., Tattanon, T. (1982). Collection and selection of Seabass spawners. In: Report of training course on seabass spawning and larval rearing, Songkhla, Thailand. FAO/SCS/GEN/82/39.

Mathew, G. (2009). Taxonomy, identification, and biology of seabass (Lates calcarifer). In: Course manual: National training on cage culture of seabass. CMFRI & NFDB, Kochi, India, 38-43 pp.

McLusky, D.S., Elliott, M. (2004). The Estuarine Ecosystem: Ecology, Threats and Management, third ed. University Press, Oxford. p. 214.

Moore, R. (1979). Natural sex inversion in the giant perch (Lates calcarifer). Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research, 30(6), 803-813.

Moore, R. (1982). Spawning and early life history of Barramundi, Lates calcarifer (Bloch), in Papua New Guinea. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research, 33, 647-661.

Moore, R., Reynold, L.F. (1982). Migration patterns of barramundi, Lates calcarifer (Bloch), in Papua New Guinea. Australian Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research, 33, 671-682.

Parween, S., Begum, N., Rahman, M.H., Hossain, M.A. (1993). On the breeding periodicity of Esomus danricus (Hamilton). University Journal of Zoology Rajshahi University, 12, 31-34.

Patnaik, S., Jena, S. (1976). Some aspects of biology of Lates calcarifer (Bloch) from Chilka Lake. Indian Journal of Fisheries, 1,2, 65-71.

Piferrer, F., Ribas, L., Díaz, N. (2012). Genomic approaches to study genetic and environmental influences on fish sex determination and differentiation. Marine Biotechnology, 14, 591-604.

Rahman, M.A., Ullah, M.R., Kabir, M.A., Alam, M.A., Rahman, M., Hossen, M.F. (2020). Artificial propagation of indigenous yellowtail catfish (Pangasius pangasius): Experiences and challenges. Aquaculture, 523, 735215.

Rahman, M.A., Flura, Ahmed, T., Pramanik, M.M.H., Alam, M.A. (2015). Impact of fifteen days fishing ban in the major spawning grounds of Hilsa (Tenualosa ilisha Hamilton 1822) on its spawning success. Research in Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries, 2, 491-497.

Ruangpanit, N. (1986). Developing hatchery techniques for Seabass (Lates calcarifer): a Review. In: Management of Wild and Cultured Seabass/Barramundi Lates calcarifer. Proceeding of an international workshop held at Darwin, N.T. Australia. 132-135 pp.

Russell, D.J., Garrett, R.N. (1983). Use by juvenile barramundi, Lates calcarifer (Bloch), and other fishes of temporary supralittoral habitats in a tropical estuary in northern Australia. Marine and Freshwater Research, 5, 805-811.

Siddik, M.A.B., Islam, M.A., Hanif, M.A., Chaklader, M.R., Kleindienst, R. (2016). Barramundi, Lates calcarifer (Bloch, 1790): A New Dimension to the Fish Farming in Coastal Bangladesh. Journal of Aquaculture Research & Development, 7, 461. doi: 10.4172/2155-9546.1000461

Sirikul, B. (1982). Contribution to the FAO UNDP training course on seabass spawning and larval rearing held at the National Institute of Coastal Aquaculture (NICA) Songkhla, Thailand.

Vij, S., Purushothaman, K., Gopikrishna, G., Lau, D., Saju, J.M., Shamsudheen, K.V., Kumar, K.V., Bashee, V.S., Gopalakrishnan, A., Hossain, M.S., Sivasubbu, S. (2014). Barcoding of Asian seabass across its geographic range provides evidence for its bifurcation into two distinct species. Frontiers in Marine Science, 1, 30.

Yue, G.H., Xia, J.H., Liu, F., Lin, G. (2012). Evidence for female-biased dispersal in the protandrous hermaphroditic Asian seabass, Lates calcarifer. PLoS ONE, 7, e37976.




How to Cite

Haque, M. A., Hossain, M. I. ., Hasan, S. J. ., Dey, P. K. ., Rahman, M. A. ., & Mahmud, Y. . (2023). Spawning Season, Spawning and Nursing Grounds Identification of Asian Seabass, Lates calcarifer (Bloch, 1790) in the Bay of Bengal, Bangladesh. Sustainable Aquatic Research, 2(2), 129–144.



Original Articles