Egg and early larval development of laboratory reared goldblotch grouper, Epinephelus costae (Steindachner, 1878) (Pisces, Serranidae)
Keywords:goldblotch grouper, Epinephelus costae, egg and embryonic development, characteristics of larvae, pigmentation
The embryonic and early larval development of the laboratory-reared goldblotch grouper, Epinephelus costae (Steindachner, 1878), are described and illustrated. The eggs, with a mean diameter of 926±19 µm and a range from 890-950 µm, were spherical and transparent with transparent chorion. Embryonic development lasted 24 hours at 25.5°C. Newly-hatched larvae were 1.762±0.047 mm in length. Absorption of the yolk sac was complete after the third day, when larvae reached 2.95±0.231 mm in total length. The mouth opened 60 hours after hatching, and was in function after 80 hours, with an opening diameter ranging from 280-320 µm. Larvae had two fields of intensive pigmentation, one above the intestine, and the other between the anus and the end of the notochord.
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