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Reproductive biology of 3 species of abalones haliotis in southern california usa

Tutschulte, T.; Connell, J.H.

Veliger 23(3): 195-206

1981


ISSN/ISBN: 0042-3211
Accession: 006316367

Three species of abalones were studied: Haliotis sorenseni (white abalone), H. fulgens (green abalone) and H. corrugata (pink abalone). White abalones are highly synchronized in their annual reproductive cycles; the entire population spawns within a few weeks in winter. Greens are less synchronized, with a spawning period that extends through the summer and early fall. Pinks are the least synchronized in their reproductive cycles, with several spawnings over the year. The whites and greens may be said to be specialized while the pinks are generalized in their reproductive cycles. Pinks mature as early as age 3, whites at 4 and greens at 5 yr. Among these 3 populations, whites show the highest apparent fecundity, the average female shedding about 5 million mature oocytes per year. Greens produce about half and pinks possibly only one fourth as many eggs as the whites do. For all ages combined, there is an even sex ratio in all 3 spp. Females predominate at earlier ages and males at older ages. This implies that, after maturity is reached, females have lower survival or lower growth rates or both. During each annual cycle whites produce a new batch of oocytes that matures and is shed within the year. This is also probably true for other species both here and in other places. This finding is at variance with earlier conclusions of other workers.

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