The banded murex Hexaplex trunculus (Linnaeus, 1758) is a commercially exploited gastropod in the Mediterranean region including Tunisia where it has become an important fishery resource these last years. In the present investigation, some reproductive aspects of this species were described in the population of Boughrara lagoon based on macroscopic examination of the gonads (gonadic conditional indices) together with observation of the seasonal hypertrophy of the penis in males and capsule gland in females. This procedure of assessing reproductive activity was validated by field observations of copulation and spawning. Mature females were found during 10 months and mature males during 8 months being both frequent in January and February. Reproductive activity was slightly asynchronous between sexes with males reaching maturity before females. Gonadic release occurred earlier in males between January and March against February to April in females. These findings were in agreement with field observations of copulation in January and February and egg-capsule laying in late February and March. Hatching juveniles were observed in the field in April and May.
Russian Journal of Marine Biology – Springer Journals
Published: Mar 16, 2012
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