BIOTIC Species Information for Talitrus saltator
Researched byGeorgina Budd Data supplied byMarLIN
Refereed byThis information is not refereed.
Reproduction/Life History
Reproductive typeGonochoristic
Developmental mechanismOvoviviparous
Reproductive SeasonMay to August Reproductive LocationAs adult
Reproductive frequencyAnnual episodic Regeneration potential No
Life span1-2 years Age at reproductive maturity<1 year
Generation time<1 year FecundityUp to 15 eggs per brood
Egg/propagule sizeNot relevant Fertilization typeInternal
Larval/Juvenile dispersal potential10-100m Larval settlement periodNot relevant
Duration of larval stageNot relevant   
Reproduction Preferences Additional InformationSexes are separate. It is possible to distinguish between sexes in specimens with a body length between 8.0 and 8.5 mm (Williams, 1978). For a description of embryonic development in Talitrus saltator see Williams (1978, Figure 1). All eggs within a single brood are at the same stage of morphological development. For a female of 12.6 mm length the mean number of eggs per brood is 13, larger females may carry a slightly larger brood of 15.
As in all crustaceans, mating and the release of juveniles, are synchronised with the moult cycle. Adults pair during their nightly migration down the beach and mate in the sand once the female has completed her moult. In the Isle of Man, Williams (1978) first caught egg bearing females in samples during May with high reproductive activity occurring between May and late August so that by September all brood pouches were found to be empty. This breeding cycle is in contrast to those of other intertidal amphipods and isopods (Hayward, 1994) in that the breeding period is shorter and controlled by day length (Talitrus saltator breeds when the natural day length is in excess of 14 hours (Williams, 1985)) irrespective of air and sea temperature (Williams, 1978). Williams (1978) found two generations to be present over a year and females died during their second over-wintering period, before the males. Williams (1978) calculated the life span of females to be ca 18 months and 21 months for males. Juveniles become sexually differentiated within three to four months of hatching and do not contribute to a precocious, secondary breeding population in the summer, they usually reach maturity by the autumn and do not breed until the following summer. The over-wintering population consists of young adults, with an additional number of juveniles arising from the last brood of the season and a few large sexually mature adults that were the last to breed. Such adults die in February, so that the young adults and maturing juveniles that overwintered, constitute the new breeding population (Williams, 1987; Hayward, 1994).
Reproduction References Williams, 1978, Hayward, 1994, Williams, 1985,
About MarLIN | Contact, Enquiries & Feedback | Terms & Conditions | Funding | Glossary | Accessibility | Privacy | Sponsorship

Creative Commons License BIOTIC (Biological Traits Information Catalogue) by MarLIN (Marine Life Information Network) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales License. Permissions beyond the scope of this license are available at Note that images and other media featured on this page are each governed by their own terms and conditions and they may or may not be available for reuse. Based on a work at