The study evaluated the dressing percentage, nutritional quality and mineral composition of six commercial fish species (Scads, Alepes djedaba, Emperors, Lethrinus lent/an, Kingfish, Scomberomorus commerson, Jobfish, Lutjanus malabaricus, Coral trout, Plectropomus maculates and Groupers, Epinephelus chlorostigma) from the Arabian gulf coast of Saudi Arabia. The Kingfish (Scomberomorus commerson) showed the highest (90.9%) dressing percentage followed by Grouper (80.6%) and Coral trout (80.3%) whereas the lowest (72.9%) was for Emperors, scad fish (Alepes djedaba) had lowest skin and bone weights. Significant (p<0.05) differences were observed in the proximate chemical composition of fish muscles in these species. The highest percentage of protein (21.51%) was found in Coral trout followed by Kingfish (20.68%) and Scads (20.64%). The lowest fat content (0.43%) was observed in Groupers (Epinephelus chlorostigma) whereas the highest fat content (1.12%) was in Kingfish. The highest energy value (4.02 MJ kg-1) in fish muscles was observed in Coral trout. Significant (p<0.05) differences were also observed in the mineral composition offish muscles in these species. All the fish species proved to be a good source of many important minerals. In spite of the expected pollution threats of coastal waters, it was interesting to note that the amount of heavy metals such as lead and cadmium present in fish muscles were relatively low (0.1-0.26 and 0.007-0.02 mg kg-1, respectively). It is concluded that these fish species contribute towards a safe, healthy and nutritious food for human consumption.
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