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First multi-generation culture of the tropical cuttlefish Sepia pharaonis Ehrenberg, 1831
Minton, J.W.; Walsh, L.S.; Lee, P.G.; Forsythe, J.W. (2001). First multi-generation culture of the tropical cuttlefish Sepia pharaonis Ehrenberg, 1831. Aquacult. Int. 9(5): 379-392
In: Aquaculture International. Springer: London. ISSN 0967-6120, more
Peer reviewed article  

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    Aquaculture; Cephalopods; Fish culture; Reproduction; Sexual maturity; Sepia pharaonis Ehrenberg, 1831 [WoRMS]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Minton, J.W., correspondent
  • Walsh, L.S.
  • Lee, P.G.
  • Forsythe, J.W.

    Sepia pharaonis, the pharaoh cuttlefish was cultured through multiple generations in the laboratory (5 consecutive generations) using closed, recirculating water filtration systems. The eggs of the original parental generation (GP) were spawned by a wild caught Gulf of Thailand female in a local fisheries laboratory, then packed and shipped air cargo to Texas where hatching occurred. The culture temperature ranged 25°-28 °C, except for one generation that was chilled intentionally to 21 °C and then warmed to 25 °C after 9.6 months. Spawning occurred as early as day 161. Spawning output was high in all generations except the group that was cultured at 21 °C. Egg fertility was low in captivity (< 20%), but hatchling survival was high (> 70%). The average egg incubation time was 13.6 d at 25-28 °C. The largest spawn resulted in 600 viable hatchlings and the smallest resulted in 11 hatchlings. The cuttlefish ate a wide variety of estuarine crustaceans and fishes as well as frozen shrimp. There were no apparent disease problems since survival from hatching to maturity was over 70%. The average life span for cuttlefish cultured at 25-28 °C was 8.9 months and 12.3 months at 21 °C. Size at hatching was measured for fourth generation (G4) hatchlings; the mean weight at hatching was 0.103 g and the mean mantle length was 6.4 mm. The largest cuttlefish cultured was a male 300 mm ML and 3,045 g; the oldest cuttlefish lived 340 d. This cuttlefish species presents an excellent choice for commercial mariculture because of its rapid growth, short life span, tolerance to crowding and handling, resistance to disease and feeding habits.

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