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Free Content Reproductive biology of the common octopus, Octopus vulgaris Cuvier, 1797 (Cephalopoda: Octopodidae) in the Gulf of Cádiz (SW Spain)

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The common octopus Octopus vulgaris is the most important demersal species in landings from the whole Gulf of Cádiz. Monthly samplings from trawl and artisanal gears were carried out in 1996, due to the remarkable multifleet nature of the octopus fishery in the study area. Yearly sex ratio was estimated as 1.06:1 (male:female). There were no significant seasonal differences in the sex ratio. A four stage maturity scale was used for both sexes. The reproductive period was determined from the monthly evolution of these stages as well as that of several maturity and condition indices. The breeding season extended from February to October, with spawning peaks in April–May and August. Dorsal mantle length and body weight at maturity were estimated at 17.6 cm and 2023 g for females and at 10.4 cm and 671 g for males. Mature males occurred throughout the year. Total fecundity ranged between 70,060 and 605,438 oocytes (mean = 315,197 ± 135,865). Residual oocytes represented 6.2% on average of the total of ovarian oocytes. The maximum number of fully developed spermatophores was 276 in a male of 21 cm and 3350 g. The mean length of mature spermatophores in mature males was 51.3 mm (±10.2).

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2002

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  • The Bulletin of Marine Science is dedicated to the dissemination of high quality research from the world's oceans. All aspects of marine science are treated by the Bulletin of Marine Science, including papers in marine biology, biological oceanography, fisheries, marine affairs, applied marine physics, marine geology and geophysics, marine and atmospheric chemistry, and meteorology and physical oceanography.
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