The relationship between shell growth and sexual maturation was studied in the venerid bivalve Phacosoma japonicum (Reeve) based on specimens from six populations around the Japanese coast in 1991 and 1992. A distinct latitudinal variation in the patterns of shell growth and gonad development was detected. Speciments from northern populations are characterized by slower rates of gonad development, later offset of interval of shell growth, and larger shell size at a given age than those from southern populations, excluding the population from the Ariake Bay, Kyushu. These data indicate the presence of a tradeoff between reproductive effort and continued growth in this species. However, in all populations bivalves attain sexual maturity before ending shell growth. First sexual maturity occurs at a shell size of about 60% of the maximum asymptotic shell height. Maximum reproductive effort appears to start when the energy available for shell growth (i.e., the yearly growth rate of shell weight) attains a maximum. These relationships between shell growth and sexual maturation were also confirmed in some other bivalve species.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Aquatic Science