Aspects of reproductive biology of wild-caught polar cod (Boreogadus saida) from Svalbard waters
AuthorNahrgang, Jasmine; Storhaug, Ekaterina; Murzina, Svetlana; Delmas, Olympe; Nemova, Nina N.; Berge, Jørgen
Polar cod (Boreogadus saida) is considered a key species in the Arctic marine ecosystems. Yet detailed or even basic knowledge regarding its biology and adaptations, especially during the polar night, is in many cases poor. Data are presently unavailable in Western literature on the gonad development of polar cod and its reproductive biology in wild specimens. Accordingly, gonad development of wild-caught polar cod from fjords of the Svalbard archipelago was studied across seasons (April, August, September, November and January). Histological analyses of polar cod showed strong indication of a group-synchronous oocyte development with determinate fecundity and iteroparity. Females started gonadal development prior to April and had not yet reached the final stage of maturation in January. Testes matured more rapidly, with males ready to spawn in January. Furthermore, our data show that polar cod were able to reach sexual maturity at age 1?. Based on our data and previous reports, we hypothesise that polar cod is a total spawner.
Published version. Source at http://doi.org/10.1007/s00300-015-1837-2.