Marine Biology

, Volume 158, Issue 4, pp 793–804 | Cite as

Geographic, population, and seasonal patterns in the reproductive parameters of the sea urchin Paracentrotus lividus

  • Rosana Ouréns
  • Luís Fernández
  • Juan FreireEmail author
Original Paper


Generalized additive models were used to synthesize the data from 52 publications on the gonad growth and spawning seasonality of Paracentrotus lividus and identify spatial and temporal patterns in the reproductive processes. According to our results, Atlantic populations spawn in spring and develop large gonads (6.4 ± 0.2% of fresh body weight (mean ± SE)), which increase in size toward higher latitudes. While in the Mediterranean, the gonads are smaller (3.1 ± 0.1%), possibly as the result of successive spawnings which impede nutrients accumulating in the gonads. Differences were also observed between habitats: gonad production was higher in seagrass meadows in the Mediterranean and in subtidal rocky substrates in the Atlantic. Food availability might cause these variations as well as the negative correlation observed between depth and the gonad index for rocky substrates. Sex and body size do not seem to influence greatly gonad growth.


Sexual Maturity Reproductive Cycle Seagrass Meadow Rocky Substrate Gonad Index 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This study was funded by projects OURIGAL (CTM 2005-07645/MAR) and CONNECT (CTM 2006-09043/MAR) by the Spanish Ministerio de Educación y Ciencia.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (PDF 20 kb)
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Supplementary material 2 (PDF 27 kb)
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Supplementary material 3 (PDF 103 kb)
227_2010_1607_MOESM4_ESM.pdf (34 kb)
Supplementary material 4 (PDF 34 kb)


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© Springer-Verlag 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Grupo de Recursos Marinos y PesqueríasUniversidad de A CoruñaA CoruñaSpain

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