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Title: Aspects of Life History and of Territorial Behavior in Young Individuals of Platynereis bicanaliculata and Nereis vexillosa (Annelida, Polychaeta)
Authors: Roe, Pamela
Issue Date: Oct-1975
Publisher: University of Hawaii Press
Citation: Roe P. 1975. Aspects of life history and of territorial behavior in young individuals of Platynereis bicanaliculata and Nereis vexillosa (Annelida, Polychaeta). Pac Sci 29(4): 341-348.
Abstract: Plarynereis bicanaliculata (Baird), an annual nereid, spawned in early
August at two areas in Washington state. Spawning was highly synchronous.
Young were planktonic for about 1 week. Within 3 weeks they had grown to 4 mm
in length, had started building tubes of mucus and diatoms, and showed a period of
rapid growth in size. By the end of September or early October they averaged 10
mm in length, at which size they remained until March. In spring they reached
adult length (20-23 mm) and during the summer gametes developed.
Nereis vexillosa Grube egg masses were found from March through August.
Nereis has a 2-year life span in both study areas, growing to one-half adult size the
1st year and to mature size the 2nd year. In the laboratory, young made tubes within
1 week after hatching from egg masses.
Members of both species defend their tubes from intruders. Usually, larger individuals
win fighting encounters, especially if they are the occupants of tubes. Small
individuals successfully defend their tubes from larger individuals in about onehalf
of the encounters; and if fights occur between equal sized individuals, occupants
are usually not displaced. Fights are real, with jaws used much for biting, and
smaller individuals are sometimes actually eaten by larger ones, especially In Nereis
vexillosa. In the laboratory the number of individuals of N. vexillosa kept in fingerbowls
decreased in number until only one or two large individuals remained.
ISSN: 0030-8870
Appears in Collections:Pacific Science Volume 29, Number 4, 1975

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