Advertisement

Eel Biology pp 51-60 | Cite as

Leptocephali

  • Noritaka Mochioka

Abstract

The anguillid leptocephalus is one of the most distinctive larvae of anguilliform fishes and has an olive leaf-like shape, no melanophores, and relatively few myomeres. The smallest anguillid larvae (Anguilla anguilla) ever collected was about 5 mm in total length (TL) and the larva contained a large, quite distinct oil globule (Schmidt 1922). The sizes of full-grown larvae are variable among species, ranging from 50 to 80 mm TL (Jespersen 1942; Castle 1963; Tabeta and Takai 1975; Smith 1989). Recent progress in otolith microstructure analysis has provided considerable knowledge about the growth and developmental events of the larvae (Tabeta et al. 1987; Umezawa et al. 1989; Tsukamoto et al. 1989, 1992; Otake et al. 1994; Arai et al. 2001). Furthermore, recent studies have finally confirmed longtime speculation about the diet of leptocephali by the discovery of detrital materials such as larvacean houses and zooplankton fecal pellets in their gut (Otake et al. 1993; Otake and Mochioka 1994; Mochioka and Iwamizu 1996; Otake 1996). In this chapter, I review recent studies on the leptocephalus larvae and discuss future research possibilities.

Keywords

Early Life History Anguilliform Fish Otolith Microstructure Analysis Zooplankton Fecal Pellet Leptocephalus Stage 
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.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Alldredge AL (1972) Abandoned larvacean houses: a unique food source in the pelagic environment. Science NY 177:885–887CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Alldredge AL (1976a) Discarded appendicularian houses as sources of food, surface habitats, and particulate organic matter in planktonic environments. Limnol Oceanogr 21:14–23CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Alldredge AL (1976b) Field behavior and adaptive strategies of appendicularians (Chordata: Tunicata). Mar Biol 38:29–39CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Aoyama J, Mochioka N, Otake T, Ishikawa S, Kawakami Y, Castle P, Nishida M, Tsukamoto K (1999) Distribution and dispersal of anguillid leptocephali in the western Pacific Ocean revealed by molecular analysis. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 188:193–200CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Aoyama J, Ishikawa S, Otake T, Mochioka N, Suzuki Y, Watanabe S, Shinoda A, Inoue J, Lokman PM, Inagaki T, Oya M, Hasumoto H, Kubokawa K, Lee TW, Fricke H, Tsukamoto K (2001) Molecular approach to species identification of eggs with respect to determination of the spawning site of the Japaneseeel Anguilla Japonica. Fish Sci 67:761–763CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Arai T, Aoyama J, Ishikawa S, Miller MJ, Otake T, Inagaki T, Tsukamoto K (2001) Early life history of tropical Anguilla leptocephali in the western Pacific Ocean. Mar Biol 138:887–895CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bishop RE, Torres JJ (1999) Leptocephalus energetics: metabolism and excretion. J Exp Biol 202:2485–2493PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Bishop RE, Torres JJ, Crabtree RE (2000) Chemical composition and growth indices in leptocephalus larvae. Mar Biol 137:205–214CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Castle PHJ (1963) Anguillid leptocephali in the southwest Pacific. Zool Publ Vic Univ Wellingt 33: 1–14Google Scholar
  10. Castle PHJ (1965) Muraenid leptocephali in Australasian waters. Trans R Soc N Z Zool 7:57–84Google Scholar
  11. Donnelly J, Torres JJ, Crabtree RE (1995) Proximate composition and nucleic acid content of premetamorphic leptocephalus larvae of the congrideel Ariosoma Balearicum. Mar. Biol 123:851–858CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hulet WH (1978) Structure and functional development of theeel leptocephalus Ariosoma balearicum (de la Roche, 1809). Philos Trans R Soc Lond Ser B 282:107–138CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Hulet WH, Robins CR (1989) The evolutionary significance of the leptocephalus larva. In: Bohlke EB (ed) Fishes of the western North Pacific, part 9, vol 2. Sears Foundation for Marine Research, Yale University, New Haven, pp 669–677Google Scholar
  14. Hulet WH, Fischer J, Rietberg BJ (1972) Electrolyte composition of anguilliform and elopiform leptocephali from the straits of Florida. J Mar Sci 22:432–448Google Scholar
  15. Ishikawa S, Suzuki K, Inagaki T, Watanabe S, Kimura Y, Okamura A, Otake T, Mochioka N, Suzuki Y, Hasumoto H, Oya M, Miller MJ, Lee TW, Fricke H, Tsukamoto K (2001) Spawning time and place of the Japaneseeel Anguilla japonica in the North Equatorial Current of the western North Pacific Ocean. Fish Sci 67:1097–1103CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Jespersen P (1942) I ndo- Pacific leptocephalids of the genus Anguilla. Dana Rep 22:1–128Google Scholar
  17. Kracht R,Tesch FW (1981) Progress report on theeel expedition of R. V.Anton Dohrn’ and R.V. `Friedrich Heincke’ to the Sargasso Sea 1979. Environ Biol Fishes 6:371–375CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Mochioka N (1994) Morphology and classification of Anguilla japonica leptocephalus. Kaiyo Mon 287:299–301Google Scholar
  19. Mochioka N (1996) Morphology and growth of Japaneseeel larvae. In: Early life-history and prospects of seed production of the Japaneseeel Anguilla Japonica. Koseisha-koseikaku, Tokyo, pp 22–32Google Scholar
  20. Mochioka N, Iwamizu M (1996) Diet of anguillid larvae: leptocephali feed selectively on larvacean houses and fecal pellets. Mar Biol 125:447–452Google Scholar
  21. Mochioka N, Iwamizu M, Kanda T (1993) Leptocephaluseel larvae will feed in aquaria. Environ Biol Fishes 36:381–384CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Moser HG (1981) Morphological and functional aspects of marine fish larvae. In: Lasker R (ed) Marine fish larvae: morphology, ecology, and relation to fisheries. Washington Sea Grant Program, Seattle, pp 90–131Google Scholar
  23. Ohtsuka S, Kubo N, Okada M, Gushima K (1993) Attachment and feeding of pelagic copepods on larvacean houses. J Oceanogr 49:115–120CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Otake T (1996) Fine structure and function of the alimentary canal in leptocephali of the Japaneseeel Anguilla japonica. Fish Sci 62:27–34Google Scholar
  25. Otake T, Mochioka N (1994) Possible food sources of Japaneseeel leptocephali. In: Tsukamoto K (ed) Preliminary report, Hakuho-Maru cruise KH-91–4. Ocean Research Institute, University of Tokyo, pp 58–60Google Scholar
  26. Otake T, Nogami K, Maruyama K (1993) Dissolved and particulate organic matter as possible food sources foreel leptocephali. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 92:27–34CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Otake T, Ishii T, Nakahara M, Nakamura R (1994) Drastic changes in otolith strontium/calcium ratios in leptocephali and glasseels of Japaneseeel Anguilla japonica. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 112:189–193CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Ozawa T, Kakizoe F, Tabeta O, Maeda T, Yuwaki Y (1991) Japaneseeel leptocephali from three cruises in the western North Pacific. Nippon Suisan Gakkaishi 57:1877–1881CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Pfeiler E (1986) Towards an explanation of the developmental strategy in leptocephalous larvae of marine teleost fishes. Environ Biol Fishes 15:3–13CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Pfeiler E (1989) Sensory systems and behavior of premetamorphic and metamorphic leptocephalous larvae. Brain Behav Evol 34:25–34PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Pfeiler E (1991) Glycosaminoglycan composition of anguilliform and elopiform leptocephali. J Fish Biol 38:533–540CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Pfeiler E, Govoni JJ (1993) Metabolic rates in early life history stages of elopomorph fishes. Biol Bull 185:277–283CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Rasquin P (1955) Observations on the metamorphosis of the bonefish, Albula vulpes (Linnaeus). J Morphol 97:77–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Schmidt J (1922) The breeding places of theeel. Philos Trans R Soc 211(B):179–208Google Scholar
  35. Smith DG (1989) Family Anguillidae: leptocephali. In: Bohlke EB (ed) Fishes of the western North Pacific, part 9, vol 2. Sears Foundation for Marine Research, Yale University, New Haven, pp 898–899Google Scholar
  36. Tabeta 0, Takai T (1975) Leptocephali of Anguilla japonica found in the waters south of the Okinawa Islands. Bull Jpn Sac Sci Fish 41:137–145CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Tabeta O, Tanaka K, Yamada J, Tzeng WN (1987) Aspects of the early life history of the Japaneseeel Anguilla japonica determined from otolith microstructure. Bull Jpn Soc Sci Fish 53:1727–1734CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Tsukamoto K (1999) Composition of bacteria in the gut of Anguilla japonica leptocephali. Kaiyo Mon 18:118–124Google Scholar
  39. Tsukamoto K, Umezawa A, Tabeta 0, Mochioka N, Kajihara T (1989) Age and birth date of Anguilla japonica leptocephali collected in western North Pacific in September 1986. Bull Jpn Soc Sci Fish 55:1023–1028CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Tsukamoto K, Umezawa A, Ozawa T (1992) Age and growth of Anguilla japonica leptocephali collected in western North Pacific in July 1990. Nippon Suisan Gakkaishi 58:457–459CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Tsukamoto K, Lee TW, Mochioka N (1994) Age and growth of Japaneseeel leptocephali. In: Tsukamoto K (ed) Preliminary report, Hakuho-Maru cruise KH-91–4. Ocean Research Institute, University of Tokyo, pp 50–54Google Scholar
  42. Umezawa A, Tsukamoto K, Tabeta O, Yamakawa H (1989) Daily growth increments in the larval otolith of the Japaneseeel, Anguilla japonica. Jpn J Ichthyol 35:440–444Google Scholar
  43. Wang CH, Tzeng WN (2000) The timing of metamorphosis and growth rates of American and Europeaneel leptocephali: a mechanism of larval segregative migration. Fish Res 46:191–205CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Tokyo 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Noritaka Mochioka
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Fisheries Biology, Division of Marine Bioresources, Department of Animal and Marine Bioresource Sciences, Faculty of AgricultureKyushu UniversityHigashi-ku, FukuokaJapan

Personalised recommendations