Early development of the sofie, Chondrostoma toxostoma

  • Rodolphe E. Gozlan
  • Gordon H. Copp
  • Jean-Noel Tourenq
Part of the Developments in environmental biology of fishes book series (DEBF, volume 19)


The developmental biology of embryos, larvae and juveniles of sofie, Chondrostoma toxostoma, reared from artificial insemination, was examined under controlled laboratory conditions, using both in-vivo and preserved specimens. The complete remodelling process (metamorphosis) was described and interpreted according to the theory of saltatory ontogeny, providing a model within which the highly complex ecological niche and behaviour (habitat use, diet, etc.) of the free embryos and larvae can be evaluated. The sofie ova were relatively opaque and the free embryos presented a small yolksac. Consequently, the free embryo steps were short and the free embryos emerged rapidly from the substratum. The circulatory system appeared early and was simple, which suggests that sofie free embryos require well oxygenated water. The remodelling of the mouth from a superior to inferior position characterised changes in the sofie’s diet during early life history, which is typical of the genus. Differences in development relative to the nase, C. naus, are discussed.

Key words

early intervals of life saltatory ontogeny southern European nase eggs 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rodolphe E. Gozlan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Gordon H. Copp
    • 1
  • Jean-Noel Tourenq
    • 2
  1. 1.Landscape & Ecology Research Group, Department of Environmental SciencesUniversity of HertfordshireHatfield, HertsUK
  2. 2.Centre d’Écologie des Systèmes Aquatiques Continentaux, UMR C5576 — CNRS/UPSUniversité Paul SabatierToulouseFrance

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