Marine Biology

, Volume 149, Issue 6, pp 1431–1441 | Cite as

Reproduction in Balanus amphitrite Darwin (Cirripedia: Thoracica): influence of temperature and food concentration

Research Article


Balanus amphitrite, an acorn barnacle, is distinctly euryhaline, eurythermal and a dominant fouling organism found in warm and temperate waters throughout the world. In this study, the influence of temperature and food concentration on the reproductive biology of this species collected from a tropical habitat was evaluated. Adult barnacles were maintained at 20, 25 and 30°C temperatures at different concentrations of food (50, 100, 150 and 200 Artemia ind−1 day−1). In this previously believed obligatory cross-fertilizing hermaphrodite, self-fertilization was observed. The rise in temperature from 20 to 30°C resulted in a longer interbreeding interval (6–7 days, 200 Artemia ind−1 day−1; 11–13 days, 50 Artemia ind−1 day−1). Computed carbon gained through feeding during the interbreeding interval indicated an inverse relationship to the temperature. At 20°C, although a greater amount of carbon was gained through feeding, the numbers of larvae produced were fivefold less when compared to those raised at 30°C. At 20°C, 2.3 μg C was required to produce a single larva, whereas at 30°C it was 0.4 μg C. A rise in rearing temperature also influenced the molting rate positively. Observations on temporal variation in the gonad development of this species in a tropical coastal environment influenced by the monsoons indicated gonad development to be positively related to chlorophyll a concentration.


Food Concentration Successive Breeding Carbon Gain Paired Individual Mantle Cavity 



We are grateful to The Director, National Institute of Oceanography, for his support and encouragement. We are thankful to Dr. N.B. Bhosle for his advice during the course of this work. We thank Dr. S.S. Sawant and other colleagues of MCMRD for their help. Author, D. Desai greatly acknowledges CSIR, India for the award of Senior Research Fellowship. This work is supported by ONR grant no: N 0014-940423 and is an NIO contribution (no. 4118).


  1. Anil AC (1991) Studies on macrofouling ecology of cirripedes in Hamana Bay (Japan), D. Agr. Thesis, Faculty of Agriculture, University of TokyoGoogle Scholar
  2. Anil AC, Chiba K, Okamoto K, Kurokura H (1995) Influence of temperature and salinity on larval development of Balanus amphitrite: implications in fouling ecology. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 118:159–166CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Barnes H (1963) Light, temperature and the breeding of Balanus balanoides. J Mar Biol Assoc UK 43:717–727Google Scholar
  4. Barnes H (1989) Egg production in cirripedes. Oceanogr Mar Biol Annu Rev 27:91–166Google Scholar
  5. Barnes H, Barnes M (1967) The effect of starvation and feeding on the time of production of egg masses in the boreo-arctic cirripede, Balanus balanoides (L.). J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 1:1–6CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Barnes H, Barnes M (1975) The general biology of Verruca stroemia (O F Muller). V. Effect of feeding, temperature and light regime on breeding and moulting cycles. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 19:227–232CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Barnes H, Crisp DJ (1956) Evidence of self-fertilization in certain species of barnacles. J Mar Biol Assoc UK 35:631–639Google Scholar
  8. Charnov EL (1987) Sexuality and hermaphroditism in barnacles: a natural selection approach. In: Southward AJ (ed) Crustacean issues 5. Barnacle biology. AA Balkema, Rotterdam, pp 89–104Google Scholar
  9. Crisp DJ (1950) Breeding and distribution of Chthamalus stellatus. Nat Lond 166:311CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Crisp DJ (1959) The rate of development of Balanus balanoides (L.) embryos in vitro. J Anim Ecol 28:119–132CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Crisp DJ (1974) Factors influencing the settlement of marine invertebrate larvae. In: Grant PT, Machie AN (eds) Chemoreception in marine organisms, Academic, London, pp 177–265Google Scholar
  12. Crisp DJ (1986) Biology of benthic marine organisms. In: Thompson MF et al (eds) Indian ocean. AA Balkema, Rotterdam pp 69–84Google Scholar
  13. Crisp DJ, Costlow JD Jr (1963) The tolerance of developing embryos to salinity and temperature. Oikos 14:22–34CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Dattesh DV, Anil AC (2005) Recruitment of the barnacle Balanus amphitrite in a tropical estuary: implications of environmental perturbation, reproduction and larval ecology. J Mar Biol Assoc UK 85:909–920CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. El-Komi MM, Kajihara T (1991) Breeding and moulting of barnacles under rearing conditions. Mar Biol 108:83–89CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Furman ER, Yule AB (1990) Self-fertilisation in Balanus improvisus Darwin. J Exp Mar Biol Ecol 144(2–3):235–239CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Fyhn UEH, Costlow JD (1977) Histology and histochemistry of the ovary and oogenesis in Balanus amphitrite L. and B. eburneus Gould (Cirripedia, Crustacea). Biol Bull Mar Biol Lab Woods Hole 152:351–359CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Hines AH (1978) Reproduction in three species of intertidal barnacles from Central California. Biol Bull Mar Biol Lab Woods Hole 154:262–281CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Hurley AC (1973) Fecundity of the acorn barnacle Balanus pacificus Pilsbry: a fugitive species. Limnol Oceanogr 18(3):386–393CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Iwaki T (1981) Reproductive ecology of some common species of barnacles in Japan. Mar Fouling Tokyo 3(1):61–70Google Scholar
  21. Karande AA (1965) On cirripede crustaceans (barnacles) an important fouling group in Bombay waters. Proc Symp Crust J Mar Biol Assoc India (Ser 4), pp 1945–1950Google Scholar
  22. Lewis CA (1975) Reproductive biology and development of the gooseneck barnacle, Pollicipes polymerus, with special emphasis on peristaltic constrictions in the fertilized egg. PhD Dissertation, University of AlbertaGoogle Scholar
  23. Malusa JR (1986) Life-history and environment in 2 species of intertidal barnacles. Biol Bull 170(3):409–428CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Nicole EP (2005) Growth of filter feeding benthic invertebrates from a region with variable upwelling intensity. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 295:79–85CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Omori M, Ikeda T (1984) Methods in marine zooplankton ecology, chap 7. A Wiley-Interscience publication. Wiley, New York, pp 143–145Google Scholar
  26. Patel B, Crisp DJ (1960a) Rates of development of the embryos of several species of barnacles. Physiol Zool 33:104–119Google Scholar
  27. Patel B, Crisp DJ (1960b) The influence of temperature on the breeding and moulting activities of operculate barnacles. J Mar Biol Assoc UK 39:667–680CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Patel B, Crisp DJ (1961) Relation between the breeding and moulting cycles in cirripedes. Crustaceana 2:89–107CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Patil JS (2003) Studies on ecology of diatoms. PhD Dissertation, University of GoaGoogle Scholar
  30. Pillay KK, Nair NB (1972) Reproductive biology of the sessile barnacle, Balanus amphitrite communis (Darwin), of the southwest coast of India. I J Mar Sci 1:8–16Google Scholar
  31. Sathyendranath S (2000) Remote sensing of ocean colour in coastal, and other optically-complex, waters. In: Sathyendranath S (ed) Chapter 1: reports of the international ocean-colour coordinating group. Published by the international ocean-colour coordinating group, Dartmouth, pp 5–21Google Scholar
  32. Wethey DS (1979) Demographic variation in intertidal barnacles. PhD Thesis, University of MichiganGoogle Scholar
  33. Wu RSS, Levings CD (1978) An energy budget for individual barnacles (Balanus glandula). Mar Biol 45:225–235CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Marine Corrosion and Materials Research DivisionNational Institute of OceanographyDona PaulaIndia

Personalised recommendations