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Profile updated on 8 May 2023
Pacific anchoveta, Sardina bocona
The Pacific anchoveta is distributed in the Eastern Pacific, from the southwestern coast of Baja California to northern Peru. It was described, according to morphological character, that anchoveta from the Gulf of Panama and the Gulf of Guayaquil (Ecuador) (Howard 1954) or the Gulf of Panama and the Gulf of Nicoya (Costa Rica) (Berdegue 1958) could be the same population. However, (Berdegue 1958) also mentions the possibility that there is no mixing, and that any difference might be phenotypical due to environmental conditions. There is little information on the stock or population structure of Pacific anchoveta in Panamanian waters, and it considers that the Gulf of Panama population is unlikely to be mixed up with other areas of the Panamanian coast (Bayliff 1963). The first and only stock assessment was conducted in 2020 (Canales 2020) and considered a single, closed stock off Panama.
The main species captured in the small pelagic fishery in Panama are Pacific anchoveta (50-60% of the landings) and thread herrings (35-40% of the landings), and other species with minor representation (Marin Trust 2022).
Image: Whitehead et al. 1988 via FAO