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Synchronous Penis Shedding in the Rough Periwinkle, Littorina Arcana

  • C. Dytham (a1), J. Grahame (a2) and P. J. Mill (a2)

Penis size and morphology of an oviparous species of rough winkle Littorina arcana Hannaford Ellis (Gastropoda: Prosobranchia) was studied at Robin Hoods Bay on the English east coast. Monthly collections were made over a two year period from August 1987 to August 1989 and again from May to December 1993. Number of penial glands was recorded and a six point scale was used to quantify penis maturity. Results indicate that male L. arcana shed their penes in summer and regenerate a new one during the following 12–20 weeks. Male L. arcana in captivity shed penes in July but not in November. The significance of penis shedding and the differences in reproductive seasonality between L. arcana and its ovoviviparous sibling species L. saxatilis is discussed.

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A.J. Berry , 1961. Some factors affecting the distribution of Littorina saxatilis (Olivi). Journal of Animal Ecology, 30, 2745.

C. Dytham , J. Grahame & P.J. Mill , 1990. Distribution, abundance and shell morphology of Littorina saxatilis (Olivi) and Littorina arcana Hannaford Ellis at Robin Hood's Bay, North Yorkshire. Hydrobiologia, 193, 233240.

J. Grahame , 1969. Shedding of the penis in Littorina littorea. Nature, London, 221, 976.

C.J. Hannaford Ellis , 1985. The breeding migration of Littorina arcana Hannaford Ellis, 1978 (Prosobranchia: Littorinidae). Zoological Journal of the Linnaean Society, 84, 9196.

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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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