Polar Biology

, Volume 10, Issue 7, pp 521-527

First online:

Growth in captivity and aspects of reproductive biology of the Antarctic fish parasite Aega antarctica (Crustacea, Isopoda)

  • Johann-Wolfgang WägeleAffiliated withFachbereich 7, Universität Oldenburg

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Specimens of the fish parasite Aega antarctica caught in the Weddell Sea and off the South Shetlands and South Orkneys were kept in aquaria for more than 2 years. These isopods were fed with plaice (Pleuronectes platessa) from the North Sea. Growth in captivity was very slow. For the first growth phase before reaching sexual maturity of females the value K = 0.12 was calculated for the Bertalanffy growth constant. Mature males are markedly smaller than breeding females (average lengths: 16.0 and 22.5 mm). An age of more than 5 years was calculated for an average-sized male, females spawn at an age of more than 10 years. No evidence for protandric hermaphroditism could be found.