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The yellowfin bream A. australis supports an important commercial net and angling fishery on the east coast of Australia. Saddleback, a deformity of the dorsal fin and profile, occurs in this species, with the occurrence of fish with saddleback being as high as 10% in some areas. The present study provides new information and analysis of causation of the saddleback deformity in the yellowfin bream fishery. Lateral line scale regeneration due to injury, and soft tissue abnormalities indicative of deep wounding are present in yellowfin bream with saddleback. X-ray images of the entire skeleton of specimens with saddleback were also examined. An unpublished government report on chemical residues in saddleback and normal yellowfin bream is appended and discussed. The absence of both chemical residues, and lack of other skeletal deformities in yellowfin bream with saddleback provide indirect evidence of physical injury as the cause of saddleback in this case. The role of discarding of meshed yellowfin bream, which are smaller than the legal minimum size, as causation of the saddleback deformity is evaluated.
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