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Broadcast spawning by Pocillopora species on the Great Barrier Reef


Schmidt-Roach, S and Miller, KJ and Woolsey, E and Gerlach, G and Baird, AH, Broadcast spawning by Pocillopora species on the Great Barrier Reef, PLoS One, 7, (12) Article e50847. ISSN 1932-6203 (2012) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0)

DOI: doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0050847


The coral genus Pocillopora is one of the few to include some species that broadcast spawn gametes and some species that brood larvae, although reports of reproductive mode and timing vary within and among species across their range. Notably, the ubiquitous Pocillopora damicornis has been described as both a brooder and spawner, although evidence of broadcast spawning is rare. Here, we report observations of broadcast-spawning in four species of Pocillopora on the Great Barrier Reef (GBR), including P. damicornis. All species spawned predictably during the early morning, two days following the full moon, and spawning was observed in multiple months over the summer period (November to February). Eggs and sperm were free-spawned concurrently. Eggs were negatively buoyant and contained Symbiodinium. This newfound knowledge on the mode, timing and regularity of broadcast spawning in Pocillopora spp. on the GBR brings us one step closer to elucidating the complex reproductive ecology of these species.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:coral, reproduction, broadcast spawning, Pocillopora
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Marine systems and management
Objective Field:Marine biodiversity
UTAS Author:Schmidt-Roach, S (Mr Sebastian Schmidt-Roach)
UTAS Author:Miller, KJ (Dr Karen Miller)
ID Code:81506
Year Published:2012
Web of Science® Times Cited:51
Deposited By:Sustainable Marine Research Collaboration
Deposited On:2012-12-11
Last Modified:2013-05-07
Downloads:445 View Download Statistics

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