Reproductive Biology

Protogynous hermaphrodites. Sequential courtship and spawning among members of a mating group occur at dusk. Eggs and larvae are pelagic. Eggs are round, approximately 0.023-0.039 in (0.6-1 mm) in diameter. Larvae hatch around 0.05-0.1 in (1.3-2.6 mm) in length, have a large yolk sac, an unformed mouth, and unpigmented eyes. With growth, they assume a deep, laterally compressed shape, and the profile of the head becomes steep. Possesses a gas bladder. The development of head spination and spinules (spine-like structures on the skin) are specializations for pelagic life.

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