Abstract

Growth, survival, and longevity of the sea urchin Echinometra lucunter lucunter (Linnaeus, 1758) were estimated in Bermuda by calcein tagging in 2005 and collection in 2006. Growth parameters were estimated using the Tanaka function and survival and longevity calculated using the growth parameters and size-frequency data. Results indicated that E. l. lucunter is a relatively slow growing and long-lived species; after about age-1, average life expectancy is over 10 yrs. Telomerase activity was detected in the tissues of E. l. luncunter and terminal restriction fragment analysis indicated a lack of size-associated telomere shortening. These results suggest a lack of telomere-related senescence, which lends support to the exponential model used to estimate an age-independent survival rate.

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