Reproductive strategies of male and female Loligo forbesi (Cephalopoda: Loliginidae)
The reproductive strategies of male and female Loligo forbesi Steenstrup, 1856 were investigated from samples obtained from commercial catches and research cruises in Irish waters. In females maturity increased with size, but in males two modes in the size at maturity were identified, with approximately 40% mature at small size (180–200 mm mantle length), and the remainder mature at >250 mm mantle length. The difference in estimated age of the two modes of mature males was small, so size differences were probably due to different growth rates. Growth and maturation proceeded together in both sexes over much of the life-cycle. The effect of maturation on relative growth of somatic tissues was examined using analysis of covariance and multivariate regressions. In males there was a significant decline in total mass, and in mass of mantle, head and viscera, relative to mantle length with maturation. In females total mass was not significantly affected by maturation, but relative masses of head, mantle and viscera declined with maturation, indicating that energy was diverted from somatic growth to gonad production. Potential fecundity estimates were obtained by counting eggs and ova in the oviduct and ovary of mature females and were in the range 2500 to 10,500 (mean 5800). Fecundity was positively related to mantle length. The ovaries of mature females contained a range of egg sizes and developmental stages, indicating that spawning probably occurs intermittently.
Authors: Collins, M. A., Burnell, G. M., Rodhouse, P. G.