Temporal life history plasticity of the Southern Ocean squid Todarodes filippovae from waters off Tasmania, Australia
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- Jackson, G.D., Wotherspoon, S. & Jackson, C.H. Mar Biol (2007) 150: 575. doi:10.1007/s00227-006-0374-5
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Population dynamics and maturity parameters were analysed for seasonal samples of the oceanic ommastrephid squid Todarodes filippovae from off the coast of Tasmania Australia from 2002 to 2004. Based on assumed daily periodicity in statolith increments, T. filippovae had a life cycle of about a year with the sexually dimorphic females reaching their larger size by predominantly growing faster than males. Due to the small sample size of males, analysis was undertaken on female individuals only. Growth in all samples was best described by a power curve and varied annually, with significantly faster growth in 2001 compared to the subsequent 2 years. Seasonal growth rates also varied with autumn- and winter-hatched squid significantly faster than summer-hatched squid. Spring growth rates were intermediate but not significantly different to the other three seasons. Peak hatching periods occurred in late autumn and early winter. ANOVA revealed a season × year interaction for mantle length and total body weight. Pairwise comparisons showed that the annual differences were likely driven by smaller squid in autumn 2002 compared to autumn samples in the other 2 years. Pairwise comparisons also revealed seasonal differences with winter-caught squid smaller than those from the majority of other samples. There were no seasonal effects on mature female gonad weights but females caught in 2002 had significantly lighter gonad weights than females from the following 2 years. There were no consistent trends among seasons or years in the age structure of mature females. This study revealed the plasticity and flexibility in growth and maturity parameters in this species, with a preference for faster growth during cooler periods.