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Embryological Development of the Australian Amphipod, Melita Plumulosa Zeidler, 1989 (Amphipoda, Gammaridea, Melitidae)

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[Melita plumulosa is an epibenthic estuarine amphipod that has recently been adopted in Australia as a test organism for the evaluation of estuarine-sediment toxicity. In this study, the embryological development of M. plumulosa was observed following the mating of individuals reared in laboratory cultures. Intra-marsupial development until hatching was completed within seven days, and five distinct stages of development were recognized that closely resemble those described previously for gammarid amphipods. There was no distinct relationship between the size of females and the number of embryos. Melita plumulosa est un amphipode épibenthique d'estuaire qui a été récemment adopté en Australie comme organisme-test pour l'évaluation de la toxicité des sédiments estuariens. Au cours de cette étude, le développement embryonnaire de M. plumulosa a été observé en suivant la reproduction d'individus élevés au laboratoire. Le développement intra-marsupial jusqu'à l'éclosion a été accompli en sept jours et cinq stades distincts de développement ont été identifiés, qui ressemblent exactement à ceux décrits auparavant chez les amphipodes Gammaridés. Il n'y avait pas de relation distincte entre la taille des femelles et le nombre d'embryons., Melita plumulosa is an epibenthic estuarine amphipod that has recently been adopted in Australia as a test organism for the evaluation of estuarine-sediment toxicity. In this study, the embryological development of M. plumulosa was observed following the mating of individuals reared in laboratory cultures. Intra-marsupial development until hatching was completed within seven days, and five distinct stages of development were recognized that closely resemble those described previously for gammarid amphipods. There was no distinct relationship between the size of females and the number of embryos. Melita plumulosa est un amphipode épibenthique d'estuaire qui a été récemment adopté en Australie comme organisme-test pour l'évaluation de la toxicité des sédiments estuariens. Au cours de cette étude, le développement embryonnaire de M. plumulosa a été observé en suivant la reproduction d'individus élevés au laboratoire. Le développement intra-marsupial jusqu'à l'éclosion a été accompli en sept jours et cinq stades distincts de développement ont été identifiés, qui ressemblent exactement à ceux décrits auparavant chez les amphipodes Gammaridés. Il n'y avait pas de relation distincte entre la taille des femelles et le nombre d'embryons.]

Affiliations: 1: Centre for Ecotoxicology, Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Technology – Sydney, c/- Ecotoxicology and Environmental Contaminants Section, Department of Environment and Conservation, New South Wales, P.O. Box 29, Lidcombe, New South Wales 1825, Australia;, Email: reinier.mann@uts.edu.au; 2: Ecotoxicology and Environmental Contaminants Section, Department of Environment and Conservation, New South Wales, P.O. Box 29, Lidcombe, New South Wales 1825, Australia

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