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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 441:165-175 (2011)  -  DOI:

Effects of temperature on embryonic development of the Humboldt squid Dosidicus gigas

Danna J. Staaf1,*, Louis D. Zeidberg1,2, William F. Gilly1

1Hopkins Marine Station, Stanford University, Oceanview Boulevard, Pacific Grove, California 93950, USA
2California Department of Fish and Game, Marine Region, 20 Lower Ragsdale Drive, Suite 100, Monterey, California 93940, USA

ABSTRACT: Little is known about embryonic development of oceanic squids, yet such information is critical to a meaningful understanding of these ecologically and economically important species. Eggs of the Humboldt squid Dosidicus gigas were artificially fertilized and incubated at temperatures found throughout this species’ range (5 to 30°C). Successful development through hatching was observed only between 15 and 25°C, and the rate of development increased with increasing temperature. Previous work reported a D. gigas egg mass at the pycnocline in the Gulf of California, suggesting that successful embryonic development can occur only in those areas of the eastern Pacific where temperature at the pycnocline is between 15 and 25°C. Analysis of available oceanographic data revealed a vast area relatively close to the California coast that is seasonally suitable for development of D. gigas embryos. Spawning offshore in this region may thus be an important factor supporting the D. gigas populations that invaded coastal waters of the Pacific Northwest after 2005.

KEY WORDS: Development · Dosidicus gigas · Humboldt squid · Temperature effects · In vitro fertilization · Range expansion · Parthenogenesis

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Cite this article as: Staaf DJ, Zeidberg LD, Gilly WF (2011) Effects of temperature on embryonic development of the Humboldt squid Dosidicus gigas. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 441:165-175.

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