Sexual differentiation, gonad development, and spawning seasonality of the Hawaiian butterflyfish, Chaetodon multicinctus
- 1) Department of Zoology, University of Hawaii at Manoa, 96822, Honolulu, HI, U.S.A.
- 2) Marine Biological Laboratory, 02543, Woods Hole, MA, U.S.A.
Synopsis: The reproductive biology of the coral reef butterflyfish,Chaetodon multicinctus, was investigated by histological examination of gonads sampled over an 18 month period from a shallow inshore population on Oahu, Hawaii. Most gonads developed directly from previously undifferentiated tissue. Ovarian development (the structural formation of lamellae and primary oocytes) was observed in fish ?44 mm and testicular development (the formation of spermatogenic crypts) in fish ?62 mm standard length (SL). In addition, testis formation was identified within the ovarian lamellae of several differentiated but immature fish. It is hypothesized that prematurational sex change may facilitate monogamy within the highly competitive social structure of this site attached species. Oocyte development in mature females was marked by distinct phases of primary growth, the formation of yolk vesicles, and vitellogenesis. Spawning activity was histologically identified by the maturation and hydration of fully yolked oocytes, and presence of postovulatory follicles. Recently spawned females from field collections and experimental gonadotropin-treatments exhibited postovulatory follicles that were estimated to persist at least 24 h after ovulation. Atresia of yolked oocytes was classified into four stages of cell degeneration and resorption. Monthly analyses of oocyte development and atresia within the sample population show thatC. multicinctus has a protracted annual spawning season with a major peak during the early spring and evidence of spawning activity among some individuals in the fall. Histological analyses of spawning activity provide more accurate and unambiguous information than do traditional gonadosomatic assays in this and probably other coral reef fishes.
- 1 - sciences appliquees, technologies et medecines
- 2 - sciences biologiques et medicales
- 3 - sciences biologiques fondamentales et appliquees. psychologie
- 1 - Life Sciences ; 2 - Agricultural and Biological Sciences ; 3 - Aquatic Science
- 1 - Life Sciences ; 2 - Agricultural and Biological Sciences ; 3 - Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics