Polar Biology

, Volume 12, Issue 2, pp 303–312

Notes on the reproduction of high-Antarctic molluscs from the Weddell Sea

  • Stefan Hain
  • Patrick M. Arnaud


The reproductive modes of 66 molluscan species from the Weddell Sea, Antarctica were investigated either by rearing of specimens in aquaria (“Neomeniomorpha” [Solenogastres], Polyplacophora and Gastropoda) or by studies of the larval shell (Bivalvia). The results show that not all marine invertebrates living in cold water environments produce large eggs, provide postspawning parental care or lack planktonic larvae (Thorson's rule), nor that brooding behaviour is always associated with small adult size. Several lecithotrophic (Solenogastres, Polyplacophora) and meroplanktonic, planktotrophic larvae (Gastropoda) were observed in aquaria. Investigations of the larval shell morphology indicate a planktotrophic or lecithotrophic larval stage in 27 Bivalvia species. With exception of two species of meroplanktonic gastropod larvae no developmental stages of benthic molluscs were ever found in plankton hauls in the Weddell Sea. This indicates that most larvae may live demersally. Brooding occurred in 1 Monoplacophora and 17 Bivalvia species. Intracapsular metamorphosis with very long embryonic development was observed in 15 Gastropoda species.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stefan Hain
    • 1
  • Patrick M. Arnaud
    • 2
  1. 1.Alfred-Wegener-Institut für Polar- und MeeresforschungBremerhavenFederal Republic of Germany
  2. 2.Centre d'Océanologie de Marseille (CNRS-UA 41)MarseilleFrance

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