Journal Article

Reproduction and feeding of <i>Sagitta enflata</i> in the Humboldt Current system off Chile

Ricardo Giesecke and Humberto E. González

in ICES Journal of Marine Science

Published on behalf of ICES/CIEM

Volume 65, issue 3, pages 361-370
Published in print April 2008 | ISSN: 1054-3139
Published online March 2008 | e-ISSN: 1095-9289 | DOI:
Reproduction and feeding of Sagitta enflata in the Humboldt Current system off Chile

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Giesecke, R., and González, H. E. 2008. Reproduction and feeding of Sagitta enflata in the Humboldt Current system off Chile. – ICES Journal of Marine Science, 65: 361–370.

This study is based on 3 years (August 2002–July 2005) of monthly zooplankton sampling at a fixed station located 18 km off Coliumo Bay (36°S), Chile. The reproduction of Sagitta enflata, its feeding rate, specific daily ration, and prey selectivity were analysed and related to several environmental variables: temperature, salinity, dissolved oxygen, chlorophyll a concentrations, and both meso- and micro-zooplankton abundance. The main predatory activity of S. enflata was centred on the copepods Paracalanus parvus, Oithona spp., and Calanus chilensis. These three species were consumed at different rates, depending mainly on the maturity of the S. enflata population. When Stages I and II individuals dominated, predation focused on the small P. parvus and Oithona spp., whereas more mature populations (Stages III and IV) preyed selectively on C. chilensis. The mean specific daily ration of 0.1 d−1 increased to 0.5 d−1 before and during maturation. The reproductive phase of S. enflata was closely coupled with the abundance of nauplii, suggesting that chaetognath reproduction paralleled that of copepods, most likely to diminish the mortality of its offspring resulting from starvation. The relationships between these were included in a conceptual model and their ecological significance is discussed.

Keywords: chaetognaths; Humboldt Current system; reproduction; Sagitta enflata

Journal Article.  6307 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Environmental Science ; Marine and Estuarine Biology

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