BIOTIC Species Information for Halichondria panicea
Click here to view the MarLIN Key Information Review for Halichondria panicea
Researched byDr Keith Hiscock Data supplied byMarLIN
Refereed byDr Rob van Soest
Reproduction/Life History
Reproductive typeSee additional information
Developmental mechanismLecithotrophic
Ovoviviparous
Reproductive SeasonApril to June Reproductive LocationAs adult
Reproductive frequencyAnnual episodic Regeneration potential Yes
Life span3-5 years Age at reproductive maturityInsufficient information
Generation time<1 year FecundityInsufficient information
Egg/propagule sizeInsufficient information Fertilization typeInternal
Larvae/Juveniles
Larval/Juvenile dispersal potentialInsufficient information Larval settlement periodInsufficient information
Duration of larval stageInsufficient information   
Reproduction Preferences Additional InformationWitte et al. (1994) found that Halichondria panicea had a seasonally distinct, very short, reproductive period in the Kiel Bight, Western Baltic. Oogenesis started in late summer/early autumn and oocytes developed over winter. Spermatogenesis occurred when mature oocytes were formed and larvae were released in the spring through to June. However, Wapstra & van Soest (1987) reported that Halichondria panicea contained oocytes all year round in the Oosterschelde although embryos were only observed between May and September. They reported the species as being hermaphrodite although it was not stated whether or not the sponge was a permanent hermaphrodite or whether it exhibited protandrous or protogynous hermaphroditism. In the same area, Vethaak et al. (1982) found, comparably, that large oocytes and embryos were present from mid-May until mid-August coinciding with an increase in water temperature from 12 °C to ca 19 °C. Vethaak et al. (1982) also observed that, in the field, newly settled colonies were apparent within one year, i.e. the following May. Wapstra & van Soest (1987) noted that the reproductive cycle in Halichondria panicea may vary considerably between areas.

A life span of about 3 years was suggested in Fish & Fish (1996). Unlike Halichondria bowerbanki, Halichondria panicea survive the winter in a normal, active state in the Oosterschelde (Vethaak et al., 1982).

Reproduction References Fish & Fish, 1996, Witte et al., 1994, Birkett et al., 1998(b), Wapstra & van Soest, 1987, Vethaak et al., 1982,
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