BIOTIC Species Information for Fucus serratus
Researched byAngus Jackson Data supplied byMarLIN
Refereed byDr Graham Scott
Reproduction/Life History
Reproductive typeGonochoristic
Developmental mechanismInsufficient information
Reproductive SeasonMay to November Reproductive LocationWater column
Reproductive frequencyAnnual protracted Regeneration potential No
Life span3-5 years Age at reproductive maturityInsufficient information
Generation timeInsufficient information FecunditySee additional information
Egg/propagule sizeInsufficient information Fertilization typeExternal
Larval/Juvenile dispersal potential>10km Larval settlement period
Duration of larval stageInsufficient information   
Reproduction Preferences Additional InformationDickinson, (1963) notes that fruiting fronds can be found almost throughout the year with fertile plants most in evidence during the winter months. However, most other work suggests that reproduction commences in late spring/early summer and continues through summer and autumn, peaking in August - October. Eggs and sperm are released into the water and fertilisation occurs in the water column. The eggs produce a sperm attractant called fucoserratin that is active within 0.5mm. The zygote then develops into a minute plant that can then settle onto the substratum. Post reproductive fronds are shed contributing to loss of surface cover. Many plants may be lost during winter due to storms and heavy wave action. Germlings have a high mortality, up to 83 % being recorded lost in 77 days on the Isle of Man. Reproduction occurs earlier and growth is faster on sheltered shores. Egg release is protracted. The largest number of receptacles recorded from a single plant is over 4,600. Eggs are broadcast into the water column to be carried by the current to settle and develop wherever they fall. Eggs attach firmly to the substratum within a few hours. Many eggs are eaten by browsing molluscs.
Reproduction References Dickinson, 1963, Brenchley et al., 1997, Johnston, 1977, Williams, 1996, Knight & Parke, 1950,
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