Seasonal changes in gonad maturity, proximate and fatty acid composition of Limbaugh’s damselfish, Chromis limbaughi Greenfield & Woods, 1980 (Pisces: Pomacentridae)


  • Mayra Lizett González-Félix Department of Scientific and Technological Research, University of Sonora, Edificio 7-G, Blvd. Luis Donaldo Colosio s/n, e/Sahuaripa y Reforma, Col. Centro, C.P. 83000, Hermosillo, Sonora
  • Martin Perez-Velazquez Department of Scientific and Technological Research, University of Sonora, Edificio 7-G, Blvd. Luis Donaldo Colosio s/n, e/Sahuaripa y Reforma, Col. Centro, C.P. 83000, Hermosillo, Sonora
  • Hugo Cañedo-Orihuela Department of Scientific and Technological Research, University of Sonora, Edificio 7-G, Blvd. Luis Donaldo Colosio s/n, e/Sahuaripa y Reforma, Col. Centro, C.P. 83000, Hermosillo, Sonora


Chromis limbaughi, gonad maturity, fatty acid profile, developmental stages, proximate composition


Paper description:

  • Limbaugh’s damselfish (Chromis limbaughi) is exploited for the aquarium trade, with all fish captured in the wild.
  • Knowledge of its reproductive biology can contribute to the development of captive breeding, which would alleviate fishing pressure and support stock enhancement.
  • ·       This investigation of the reproductive biology of C. limbaughi included its sexual system, seasonal gonad maturity, size at first sexual maturity, fatty acid composition.
  • Water quality under which C. limbaughi matured was measured and should prove useful for broodstock management in captivity.

Abstract: Limbaugh’s damselfish, Chromis limbaughi Greenfield & Woods, 1980, is endemic to the Gulf of California, and one of the five most exploited species for the aquarium trade in this region. C. limbaughi is a gonochoristic, gregarious and territorial species without sexual dimorphism that inhabits rocky, sheltered areas. Development of captive breeding techniques for this species would not only ensure a continued supply of fish for the commercial trade, but perhaps more importantly, it would also alleviate fishing pressure and support stock enhancement. Thus, as a first step towards achieving these goals, in this work, we investigated some aspects of the reproductive biology of C. limbaughi. Seasonal fish samplings, with a total of eighty-nine fish caught in one year, were carried out at San Esteban Island, Gulf of California, Mexico. The reproductive season of C. limbaughi extends, at least, from May to September. A new maximum standard length of 10.5 cm is reported for this species. The estimated size at first sexual maturity was 7.90 cm for males and 7.59 cm for females. For both male and female gonads, the major constituent fatty acids were palmitic acid, stearic acid, oleic acid, docosahexaenoic acid, eicosapentaenoic acid and arachidonic acid. The water-quality conditions under which maturation of C. limbaughi took place were measured, and should prove useful for the management of broodstock in captivity.

Received: June 13, 2019; Revised: August 5, 2019; Accepted: September 3, 2019; Published online: September 12, 2019

How to cite this article: González-Félix ML , Perez-Velazquez M, Cañedo-Orihuela H. Seasonal changes in gonad maturity, proximate and fatty acid composition of Limbaugh’s damselfish, Chromis limbaughi Greenfield & Woods, 1980 (Pisces: Pomacentridae). Arch Biol Sci. 2019;71(4):755-65.


Download data is not yet available.


Bruckner AW. The importance of marine ornamental reef fish trade in the wider Caribbean. Rev Biol Trop. 2005;53:127-38.

Livengood EJ, Chapman FA. The ornamental fish trade: an introduction with perspectives for responsible aquarium fish ownership [Internet]. Gainesville, FL, USA: University of Florida, IFAS, Florida Cooperative Extension Service; 2007 [cited 2016 Nov 01]. 7 p. Available from:

Wabnitz C, Taylor M, Green E, Razak T. From ocean to aquarium: the global trade in marine ornamental species. Cambridge, UK: UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre; 2003. 64 p.

Gijón-Díaz D, Reyes-Bonilla H, Guerrero-cha TP, Fernández-Rivera Melo FJ. Economic potential of ornamental fish catching under federal protection in Mexico. Rev Biol Trop. 2017;65:195-210. Spanish.

NORMA Oficial Mexicana NOM-059-SEMARNAT-2001, Proteccion ambiental-Especies nativas de México de flora y fauna silvestres-categorías de riesgo y especificaciones para su inclusion, exclusion o cambio-lista de especies en riesgo. Offic Fed, Mexico. 2010 Dec 30: 1-84. Spanish.

Almenara-Roldán S, Ketchum JT. Forgotten islands of the Mexican Pacific. OFI J. 1994;9:12-4.

Lango-Reynoso F, Chávez MC, Zamora-Castro JE, Hernández-Zárate G, Ramírez-Barragán MA, Solís-Morán E. Ornamental marine fishkeeping: a trade of challenges and opportunities. Lat Am J Aquat Res. 2012;40:12-21.

Arantes FP, Borḉato FL, Sato Y, Rizzo E, Bazzoli N. Reproduction and embryogenesis of the mandi-amarelo catfish, Pimelodus maculatus (Pisces, Pimelodidae), in captivity. Anat Histol Embryol. 2012;42:30-9.

Muchlisin ZA. A general overview on some aspects of fish reproduction. Aceh Int J Sci Technol. 2014;3:43-52.

Reading BJ, Sullivan CV. Vitellogenesis in fishes. In: Ferrell AP, editor. Encyclopedia of fish physiology: from genome to environment. Maryland Heights, MO, USA: Elsevier; 2011. p. 635-46.

Collier JT, Kaneko T, Hirano T, Grau EG. Seasonal changes in reproductive activity in the Potter’s angelfish (Centropyge potteri) in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. Environ Biol Fishes 2003;68:49-57.

Guerriero G. Seasonal steroids variations and maturity stages in the female chub, Leuciscus cephalus L. (Pisces, Cyprinidae). Ital J Zool. 2007;74:317-24.

Izquierdo MS, Fernández-Palacios H, Tacon AGJ. Effect of broodstock nutrition on reproductive performance of fish. Aquaculture 2001;197:25-42.

Sargent JR, Tocher DR, Bell JG. The lipids. In: Halver JE, Hardy RW, editors. Fish Nutrition. 3rd ed. San Diego, CA, USA: Academic Press; 2002. p. 181-257.

Tocher DR, Bell JG, Dick JR, Crampton VO. Effects of dietary vegetable oil in Atlantic salmon hepatocyte fatty acid desaturation and liver fatty acid composition. Lipids 2003;38:723-32.

Sorbera LA, Zanuy S, Carrielo M. A role for polyunsaturated fatty acids and prostaglandins in oocyte maturation in the sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax). In: Vandry H, editor. Trends in comparative endocrinology and neurology: from molecular to integrative biology. New York, NY, USA: New York Academy of Sciences; 1998. p. 535-537.

NORMA Oficial Mexicana NOM-062-ZOO-1999, Especificaciones técnicas para la producción, cuidado y uso de los animales de laboratorio. Offic J Fed, Mexico. 2001 Aug 22:107-65. Spanish.

Brown-Peterson NJ, Wyanski DM, Saborido-Rey F, Macewicz BJ, Lowerre-Barbieri SK. A standardized terminology for describing reproductive development in fishes. Mar Coast Fish. 2011;3:52-70.

Association of Official Analytical Chemists (AOAC). Official Methods of Analysis. Arlington, VA, USA Association of Analytical Chemists; 2005.

Folch J, Lees M, Sloane GH. A simple method for the isolation and purification of total lipides from animal tissues. J Biol Chem. 1957;1:497-509.

Lochmann RT, Gatlin III DM. Essential fatty acid requirement of juvenile red drum (Sciaenops ocellatus). Fish Physiol Biochem. 1993;12:221-35.

Udupa KS. Statistical method of estimating the size at first maturity in fishes. Fishbyte 1986;4(2):8-10.

Hattori A, Casadeval M. Sex change strategies and group structure of damselfishes. In: Frédérich B, Parmentier E, editors. Biology of damselfishes. Boca Raton, FL, USA: CRC Press; 2016. p. 92-130.

Dulčić J, Kraljević M. Age, growth and mortality of damselfish (Chromis chromis L.) in the eastern middle Adriatic. Fish Res. 1995;22:255-264.

Pandian TJ. Sexuality if fishes. 1st ed. Boca Raton, Florida, USA: CRC Press; 2010. 218 p.

Kim HJ, Na JH, Oh C-W. Age and growth of damselfish Chromis notata (Temminck & Schlegel, 1843), Jeju Island, Korea. J Appl Ichthyol. 2016;32:1179-85.

Asoh K, Yoshikawa T, Kasuya M. Gonadal development and non-functional protogyny in coral-reef damselfish, Dascyllus albisella Gill. J Fish Biol. 2001;58:1601-16.

Fishelson L. Behaviour, socio-ecology and sexuality in damselfishes (Pomacentridae). Ital J Zool. 1998;65:387-98.

Hernández-Olalde L. Ecología reproductiva de peces de arrecife rocoso del suroeste del Golfo de California [dissertation]. La Paz, Baja California, Mexico: Instituto Politécnico Nacional; 2008. 173 p. Spanish.

Fischer W, Krupp F, Schneider W, Sommer C, Carpenter KE, Niem VH. Guía FAO para la identificación de especies para los fines de la pesca. Pacífico-centro oriental. Vol. 3, Vertebrados (Part 2). Rome, Italy: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations; 1995. 1813 p. Spanish.

Randall JE, DiBattista JD. A new species of damselfish (Pomacentridae) from the Indian Ocean. Aqua Int J Ichthyol. 2013;19:1-21.

Allen GR. Damselfishes of the world. Melle, Germany: Mergus Publishers; 1991. 271 p.

Pequeño G, Vargas L, Riedemann A. The “damselfish” Chromis crusma (Valenciennes, 1833) in the coast of Valdivia (ca. 39ºS) with comments on the genus Chromis Cuvier, 1814, in Chilean waters (Osteichthyes: Pomacentridae). Invest Mar Valparaiso 2005;33(1):101-107. Spanish.

Gopakumar G. Culture of marine ornamental fishes with reference to production systems, feeding and nutrition. In: International Seminar on Ornamental Fish Breeding, Farming and Trade; 2006 Feb 5-6; Cochin, India; 2006. p. 61-70.

Bessa E, Ferraz-Dias J, De Souza AM. Rare data on a rocky fish reproductive biology: Sex ratio, length of first maturation and spawning period of Abudefduf saxatilis (Linnaeus, 1758) with notes on Stegastes variabilis spawning period (Perciformes: Pomacentridae) in São Paulo, Brazil. Braz J Oceanogr. 2007;55(3):199-206.

Lee YD, Lee TY. Studies on the reproductive cycle of damselfish, Chromis notatus (Temminck et Schlegel). Bull Korean Fish Soc. 1987;20(6):509-19.

Robertson DR, Petersen CW, Brawn JD. Lunar reproductive cycles of benthic-brooding reef fishes: reflections of larval biology or adult biology? Ecol Monogr. 1990;60:311-29.

Gladstone W. Temporal patterns of spawning and hatching in a spawning aggregation of the temperate reef fish Chromis hypsilepis (Pomacentridae). Mar Biol. 2007;151:1143-52.

Valdéz-Holguín JE, Lara-Lara JR. Primary productivity in the Gulf of California. Effects of el niño 1982-1983 event. Ciencias Marinas 1987;13:34-50.

Jakes-Cota U, Tripp-Valdez A, López-Fuerte FO. Length-weight relationship and relative condition factor of the Stone Scorpionfish Scorpaena mystes in the central area of the Gulf of California, México. Hidrobiológica 2017;27(1):127-29.

Al-Zibdah M, Kan’an N. Aspects of growth, reproduction, and feeding habit of three pomacentrid fish from Gulf of Aqaba, Jordan. Jordan J Biol Sci. 2009;3:119-28.

Chandrasekhara-Rao A, Krishnan L. Biochemical composition and changes in biological indices associated with maturation of the ovary in the spiny cheek grouper Epinephelus diacanthus (Valenciennes, 1828). Indian J Fish. 2011;58(2):45-52.

Urquidez-Bejarano P, Perez-Velazquez M, González-Félix ML, Castro-Longoria R. Fatty acid and proximate composition of wild male and female king angelfish (Holacanthus passer) gonads during the ripe and spent developmental stages. Anim Reprod. 2016;13(4):820-29.

González-Félix ML, Lawrence AL, Gatlin III DM, Perez-Velazquez M. Growth, survival and fatty acid composition of juvenile Litopenaeus vannamei fed different oils in the presence and absence of phospholipids. Aquaculture 2002;205:325-43.




How to Cite

González-Félix ML, Perez-Velazquez M, Cañedo-Orihuela H. Seasonal changes in gonad maturity, proximate and fatty acid composition of Limbaugh’s damselfish, Chromis limbaughi Greenfield & Woods, 1980 (Pisces: Pomacentridae). Arch Biol Sci [Internet]. 2019Dec.19 [cited 2022Jul.5];71(4):755-6. Available from: