Marine Biology

, Volume 116, Issue 1, pp 39–45 | Cite as

Environmental parameters affecting induction of hatching in halibut (Hippoglossus hippoglossus) embryos

  • J. V. Helvik
  • B. T. Walther


The influence of some environmental parameters in the regulation of hatching of halibut (Hippoglossus hippoglossus) embryos is reported. The progress of hatching was observed when light, oxygen and turbulence were varied. Environmental parameters influenced the induction of hatching, while the exit mechanism of halibut embryos was unaltered. Light arrests hatching of halibut eggs, and transfer of such eggs to darkness resulted in rapid and synchronous hatching. Hatching under different oxic conditions shows that better oxygen availability does not postpone the time of hatching in halibut. Oxygen seems therefore to have a minor role in the regulation of hatching in halibut. Induction of hatching was delayed under hypoxic conditions (15 mm Hg) compared to higher oxygen levels, but this probably reflects a minimal oxygen level needed for metabolism during hatching. Non-stationary water conditions delayed hatching for 1.5 d both in eggs incubated in turbulence, and in eggs subjected to turbulence at the time of hatching. Turbulence had an immediate inhibitory effect on hatching, but this inhibition was reversible under stationary conditions, under which hatching resumed after 150 to 250 min. We conclude that hatching in halibut occurs after sensory input from environmental factors which are integrated by the embryo before proceeding to hatch.


Oxygen Environmental Factor Stationary Condition Water Condition Hypoxic Condition 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. V. Helvik
    • 1
    • 2
  • B. T. Walther
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratory of Marine Molecular Biology, HiBUniversity of BergenBergenNorway
  2. 2.Department of BiochemistryUniversity of BergenBergenNorway

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