, Volume 140, Issue 5, pp 971-979

Quantification of ontogenetic discontinuities in three species of oegopsid squids using model II piecewise linear regression

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Growth trajectories of morphological characters may change during ontogeny, but this change is often overlooked or, at best, is estimated visually. An objective method was developed for determining discontinuities in morphological measurements of three species of oceanic squids: Chtenopteryx sicula (Vérany, 1851), Mastigoteuthis magna Joubin, 1913, and Brachioteuthis sp. 3. The specimens were collected on the Amsterdam Mid North Atlantic Plankton Expeditions (1980–1983) along a transect from 55°N to 25°N along 30°W. Discontinuities were quantified via an iterative, model II, piecewise linear regression (PLR) analysis, whereby the regression model incorporated a fixed breakpoint that was increased in each iteration across the range of dorsal mantle lengths (DMLs). The iteration with the lowest LOSS value was selected as the best estimate of the breakpoint. In C. sicula, 7 of 10 measured characters had a single breakpoint, and 5 of these occurred at 7–9 mm DML. In M. magna, only 4 of 12 characters had breakpoints, 3 of which occurred at 4–7 mm DML. More, larger specimens would likely yield additional breakpoints. In Brachioteuthis sp. 3, 12 of 14 characters had discernable breakpoints; 3 characters had 2 breakpoints. Most breakpoints occurred at 11–12 mm DML, and all were found at larger sizes than in the other species. This clustering of breakpoints into discrete size ranges may be considered an allomorphosis, and this rapid morphological change may correlate with rapid ecological change.

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