UBC Faculty Research and Publications

The Dynamics of Maximum Lengths for the Invasive Silver-Cheeked Toadfish (Lagocephalus sceleratus) in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea Ulman, Aylin; Kalogirou, Stefanos; Pauly, D. (Daniel)


The Eastern Mediterranean Sea is the most invaded sea on the planet, with 666 non-indigenous species now recorded in the region. However, not all of these become successful in their new environments. Success here is defined by wide geographical spread, increased abundances, and larger maximum sizes than their native range. The silver-cheeked toadfish Lagocephalus sceleratus (Gmelin 1789) was first recorded in the Mediterranean Sea in 2003. It has now spread to all corners of the basin and is increasingly abundant in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea where it reaches monstrous sizes compared to the maximum sizes reported from its native range. This contribution presents three well-documented new weight records from the Dodecanese Islands, Greece: one specimen weighing 8.5 kg from 2012, and two specimens weighing 8 and 9 kg, respectively, from 2021. The latter is also confirmed with other well-documented larger-size records, along with a physiological hypothesis suggesting how such large sizes are reached.

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