Rhythms of larval release in the shore crab Carcinus maenas (Decapoda: Brachyura)

Zeng, Chaoshu, and Naylor, Ernest (1997) Rhythms of larval release in the shore crab Carcinus maenas (Decapoda: Brachyura). Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 77 (2). pp. 451-461.

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The process of larval release in field collected ovigerous Carcinus maenas was monitored in the laboratory using a time-lapse video recorder. Under constant light (L:L) and simulated natural light/dark cycles (L:D), larval release normally occurred in two or more main events at about daily and/or tidal intervals. Since larval release in the crab was expressed with circadian and circatidal periodicity in continuous light and in the absence of tidal cues, it suggests involvement of endogenous timing. Crabs showing daily larval release rhythms released larvae at various times of the day in L:L. In contrast, under simulated L:D cycles, 37 out of 38 crabs released larvae during the dark phase, suggesting nocturnal release of larvae in the crab under natural conditions. Larval release from freshly collected females which shed larvae within two days of collection occurred predominantly around the times of expected nocturnal high tide. When both local semidiurnal high tides occurred in daylight during long summer days, larval release appeared to start 2–3 h earlier than the expected morning high tide, before the onset of daylight. Larval release at the time around high tide, linked to a previously described larval tidal migration rhythm of ebb-phased upward swimming, is likely to have been selected for by enhancing the larval offshore dispersal process. Nocturnal larval release is probably adaptive in the avoidance of visual predators by ovigerous females as they release larvae.

Item ID: 28592
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1469-7769
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2013 06:54
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060801 Animal Behaviour @ 50%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060803 Animal Developmental and Reproductive Biology @ 30%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060808 Invertebrate Biology @ 20%
SEO Codes: 96 ENVIRONMENT > 9608 Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity > 960802 Coastal and Estuarine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity @ 100%
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