Mud crab survey and fecundity study around Ebonyi river basin, Ebonyi State, Nigeria


Rupert C Akpaniteaku

Population of Ebonyi mud crab is visibly declining in the wild. The need to enhance the population through aquaculture has been addressed earlier by the cultivability and feeding research. There was need to investigate the population density and reproduction capacity, to ensure sustainability of the aquaculture. The survey was carried out in two locations (Ogelegu and Idembia) from March to May 2014. Fecundity was studied with the females irrespective of the location. Abdominal flap and its characteristic U shape were used for identification of the specimens. Matured ones were confirmed by their rounded abdomen. The population of the males was significantly (P<0.05) higher than that of the females. At Ogelegu 32.4% of the catch were females and 67.6% were males. The females accounted for 27.7% of the catch at Idembia, and the males represented 72.3%. There was negative correlation between fecundity and weight, and also between fecundity and size. The highest number of eggs obtained from an individual was significantly lower than the number in marine crab. The abdominal flap and size of egg may be responsible for the small number of crabs obtained from the freshwater. However, size of the female may not be a factor in estimating the number of offspring.


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