Nearly 263 000 individual length–weight (L/W) data, collected during 2839 fish stock assessments between 1992 and 2009, were used to calculate L/W relationships (W = aLb) of 40 freshwater fish species from Flanders (Belgium). Roach Rutilus rutilus, perch Perca fluviatilis, three‐spine stickleback Gasterosteus aculeatus, gudgeon Gobio gobio and European eel Anguilla anguilla were the most abundant species in our surveys. Mean a and b values were in accordance with those available in FishBase. Mean b across all examined species is 3.094 (95% CL = 3.041 to 3.148) indicating a tendency towards slightly positive allometric growth in most fishes (thirty‐three species with b > 3). On the basis of a form factor equation, we characterized 2 species as ‘eel‐like’, 7 as ‘elongated’, 22 as ‘fusiform’ and 9 species as ‘short and deep’. This paper adds a substantial dataset to the yet scarcely available a and b values of European populations of freshwater fish species.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.