Marine Biology

, Volume 145, Issue 5, pp 905–916 | Cite as

Reproduction in the deepwater squid Moroteuthis ingens, what does it cost?

  • G. D. JacksonEmail author
  • J. M. Semmens
  • K. L. Phillips
  • C. H. Jackson
Research Article


The cost of reproduction for the terminal spawning onychoteuthid squid, Moroteuthis ingens, was analysed using measures of condition and tissue biochemistry. Both males and females showed a dramatic drop in the weight of the gonad in stage 6 (spent) individuals. The mantle weight and nidamental gland weight of females also decreased during the maturation process. Males, however, had a marked increase in both the penis and spermatophoric complex weight in spent individuals, while female oviducal gland weight and nidamental gland length also increased in stage 6 individuals. Residual analysis indicated that testis growth was not developing at the expense of mantle growth, although there was a suggestion of cost to the fins. Females showed that the development of the ovary occurred at a cost to both the mantle and fins. Overall body condition also declined with maturity stage for both males and females, with stage 6 individuals of both sexes in poor condition. Very few females had eggs in the oviducts, suggesting that the oviducts are used as ducts instead of storage organs. Proximal analysis revealed a loss of constituents within the mantle during maturation, with an associated increase in water, indicating the remobilization of energy from the mantle to fuel reproduction. This study suggests that the digestive gland is not used as an energy store in this species.


Digestive Gland Testis Weight Mantle Length Somatic Condition Ovary Weight 
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We thank staff at NIWA New Zealand who supplied squid samples and allowed J.M.S. to join two research cruises. We are also grateful to the crew of the “Adriatic Pearl” who enthusiastically collected squid in Tasmanian waters. Thanks also to Justin Ho and Louise Ward from the University of Tasmania, who assisted with the biochemical analysis and Tertia McArthur, Eliza Green and Chester Sands who assisted with dissections. Thanks to Belinda McGrath-Steer for the interesting discussions on reproductive strategies. This work was funded by an Australian Research Council Large Grant (no. A19933031). We thank two anonymous reviewers who helped improve an earlier draft of the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. D. Jackson
    • 1
    Email author
  • J. M. Semmens
    • 2
  • K. L. Phillips
    • 1
  • C. H. Jackson
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Antarctic and Southern Ocean StudiesUniversity of TasmaniaHobartAustralia
  2. 2.Marine Research Laboratories, Tasmanian Aquaculture and Fisheries InstituteUniversity of TasmaniaAustralia

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