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You are here:   animal list > Nardoa novaecaledoniae




Nardoa novaecaledoniae

Perrier 1875

Abbie Taylor (2011)



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 Nardoa novaecaledoniae are usually solitary animals, only rarely spotted near other individuals. Therefore reproductive strategies have to be robust, to ensure the fertilisation of eggs, and replenishment of the population. Nardoa novaecaledoniae has 10 sets gametes, two rows down each arm. Each arm has its own gonopore, where the gametes are released (Mercier & Hamel 2009).

Asteroidae stars are broadcast spawners and are thought to rely on photoperiod cues to induce the release of gametes. Photoperiod cues are based on a relationship between the water temperature or length of a day and the release of gametes. The release of gametes can also be associated with other environmental cues; however photoperiod is the most constant cue for most Asteroidae stars (Mercier & Hamel 2009).

A lot of energy is put into the development of gametes in the months leading up to spawning. Nutrients in the pyloric ceaca are transferred directly to the gonads during gametogensis (McClintock et al.1995). The stars are seen to actively consume more food in the months leading up to spawning. The gonads will continually grow through autumn and winter, to reach a maximum size in spring, when spawning begins (Mercier & Hamel 2009). The size of the gonads increases annual with maturity (McClintock et al.1995).


Twenty four hours after fertilisation has occurred, the larvae will be able to swim. As the larva grows the gut, anus and coelomic cavities develop. The larva becomes ciliated which aids movement and feeding. At this stage of development the larva has bilateral symmetry. During this period the larva has positive phototaxis, meaning it will actively stay within the water column where it is light. When the larva is ready to settle and undergo metamorphosis, it will become negatively phototaxic, forcing it to settle in the dark within the benthos (Ruppert et al. 2004).

During this stage of the development the larva will transform from a bilateral larva into a pentamerous juvenile sea star (Ruppert et al. 2004).

           Grey area is the pyloric ceaca, the yellow area is the gonads                                                                                                    

The row of gonads down the side of one arm. 

The cross seciton of a arm. showing the pyloric ceaca and the gonands.