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The breeding cycle and growth of open coast and estuarine populations ofLittorina littorea

  • J. D. Fish (a1)

The breeding cycle and growth of a population of Littorina littorea (L.)from an exposed rocky shore is compared with a population from a neighbouring sheltered estuarine habitat. The estuarine population matures earlier in the year, and maximum spawning activity is recorded in January compared with March on the open coast. This is considered to be the result of the higher nutritional status of the estuary. Egg capsules and veliger larvae have been found amongst the detritus on the estuary, and the establishment of an earlier settlement in this population is explained by concluding that a substantial proportion of the egg capsules do not leave the estuary, but undergo their full development in the moist detritus. At both localities individuals are sexually mature at a shell height of about 11–12 mm. Snails from the estuary reproduce for the first time during their second winter compared with the second or third winter for the open coast population.

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Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom
  • ISSN: 0025-3154
  • EISSN: 1469-7769
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-the-marine-biological-association-of-the-united-kingdom
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