Edible Sea Urchins: Biology and Ecology

Edited by

  • John M. Lawrence, Department of Biology, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL 33620-5200, USA
  • John M. Lawrence, Department of Biology, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL 33620-5200, USA

Sea urchins are a major component of the world ocean. They are important ecologically and often greatly affect marine communities. They have an excellent fossil record and consequently are of interest to paleontologists. Research has increased in recent years stimulated first by a recognition of their ecological importance and then because of their economic importance. Scientists around the world are actively investigating their potential for aquaculture.This book is designed to provide a broad understanding of the biology and ecology of sea urchins. Synthetic chapters consider biology of sea urchins as a whole to give a broad view. The topics of these chapters include reproduction, metabolism, endocrinology, larval ecology, growth, digestion, carotenoids, disease and nutrition. Subsequent chapters consider the ecology of individual species that are of major importance ecologically and economically. These include species from Japan, New Zealand, Australia, Europe, North America, South America and Africa.
View full description


Marine biologists, students and researchers studying aquaculture, fisheries, and developmental biology


Book information

  • Published: October 2006
  • Imprint: ELSEVIER
  • ISBN: 978-0-444-52940-4


"Consists of contributions from leading sea urchin experts, covering the basic biology of sea urchins and describing 17 species of edible sea urchines....This text is a solid compilation of the state of the knowledge of sea urchin biology, and will be a valuable addition to the library of any sea urchin researcher or marine biologists." - NORTHEASTERN NATURALIST

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. The edible sea urchinsJohn M. Lawrence1. Prehistory fishing of sea urchins2. Contemporary commercial fishing of sea urchins3. Aquaculture of sea urchins4. The edible sea urchins5. Life-history strategies of sea urchins6. ConclusionReferencesChapter 2. Gametogenesis and reproduction of sea urchinsCharles W. Walker, Tatsuya Unuma, Michael P. Lesser1. Introduction2. Structure of the gonads of the sea urchin3. Interacting gametogenic and nutritive phagocyte cycles in the sea urchin gonad: stages, physiology and molecular biology3.1. Stages in gametogenesis3.2. Nutritive phagocytes in ovaries and testes3.3. Inter-gametogenesis and NP phagocytosis3.4. Pre-gametogenesis and NP renewal3.5. Gametogenesis and NP utilization3.6. End of gametogenesis: NP exhaustion and spawning3.7. Environmental control of gametogenesis4. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 3. Biochemical and energy requirements of gonad developmentAdam G. Marsh, Stephen A. Watts1. Introduction2. Cellular energy utilization3. Energy metabolism during development4. Biochemical components of cellular metabolism5. Gonad growth6. Gonad energy metabolism6.1. Protein metabolism6.2. Carbohydrate metabolism6.3. Anaerobic metabolism7. Feeding and metabolism8. SummaryReferencesChapter 4. Reproductive endocrinology of sea urchinsKristina M. Wasson, Stephen A. Watts1. Sea urchin gonad2. Exogenous regulation of reproduction2.1. Environmental factors2.2. Endocrine disruptors3. Endogenous regulation of reproduction3.1. Steroids3.1.1. Sex steroids in the gonads3.1.2. Steroid converting enzymes in the gonads3.1.3. Sex steroids in the gonads3.1.4. Response to exogenous administration of sex steroids3.2. Protein and peptidergic factors3.3. Catecholaminergic and cholinergic factors4. Mechanisms of regulation4.1. Paracrine4.2. Endocrine5. Gene regulation in reproduction6. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 5. Echinoid larval ecologyLarry R. McEdward, Benjamin G. Miner1. Introduction2. The echinoid life cycle3. Life cycle diversity4. Echinoid larval diversity5. Reproductive ecology5.1. Egg provisioning5.2. Fertilization ecology6. Larval ecology6.1. Reproductive strategies6.2. Feeding6.3. Larval growth6.4. Phenotypic plasticity6.5. Swimming6.6 Mortality and defense7. Recruitment ecology7.1. Larval transport and dispersal7.2. Settlement7.3. Metamorphosis and recruitment8. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 6. Growth and survival of post-settlement sea urchinsThomas A. Ebert1. Growth1.1. Introduction1.2. Skeletal composition1.3. Resorption1.4 Natural growth lines1.5. Tagging1.6. Growth models2. SurvivalReferencesChapter 7. Feeding, digestion and digestibilityJohn M. Lawrence, Addison L. Lawrence, Stephen A. Watts1. Ingestion1.1. Food chemistry1.1.1. Attractants1.1.2. Stimulants and deterrents1.2. Environmental conditions1.2.1. Hydrodynamics1.2.2. Lightl.2.3. Temperature1.3. Food shape1.4. Physiological state1.4.1. Nutritional state1.4.2. Body size1.4.3. Reproductive state2. Digestion2.1. Structure of the gut2.2. Digestive enzymes2.3. Gut transit time2.4. Role of microorganisms in digestion3. Digestibility4. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 8. Carotenoids in sea urchinsMiyuki Tsushima1. Introduction2. Carotenoids distribution in sea urchins3. Metabolism of carotenoids in sea urchins4. The effect of dietary carotenoids on gonad color in sea urchins5. The role of carotenoids in sea urchins5.1. Egg production and development5.2. Biological functions6. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 9. Disease in sea urchinsK. Tajima, J.R.M.C. Silva, J.M. Lawrence1. Introduction2. Bacterial disease in Japanese sea urchins2.1. Evidence for bacterial disease2.2. Symptoms of the disease2.3. Isolation and description of the disease-causing bacterium2.3.1. Summer disease2.3.2. Spring disease2.4. Biological responses to bacterial infection2.5. Bacterial control3. Immunological response to bacterial diseases in sea urchins3.1. General concept of the immune response3.2. Coelomocyte types3.3. Phagocytosis3.4. Inflammatory process3.5. Origin of the coelomocytes3.6. Coelomic fluid and coelomocyte concentration3.7. Coagulation and encapsulation3.8. The complement system and humoral factors4. ConclusionsReferencesColor PlatesChapter 10. Ecology of CentrostephanusN. Andrew, M. Byrne1. Biogeography2. Ecological impacts2.1. Habitat structure2.2. Food and feeding ecology3. Population regulation3.1. Recruitment3.2. Predation and disease3.3. Competition3.4. Physical factors4. Reproduction4.1. Reproductive cycle4.2. Habitat related patterns4.2. Development and larval ecology5. Growth and age6. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 11. Ecology of DiademaT. R. McClanahan, N. Muthiga1. Introduction1.1. Species of Diadema1.2. Biogeography and large-scale distribution1.3. Local distribution and abundance patterns2. Population biology and ecology2.1. Reproductive biology and ecology2.2. Reproductive cycles2.3. Feeding ecology2.4. Growth and longevity2.5. Pelagic larval dynamics2.6. Benthic population dynamics3. Community ecology and coexistence3.1. Ecosystem effects3.2. Competitive interactions with other sea urchins3.3. Competitive interactions with fish3.4. Predation and predators4. Herbivory and grazing effects4.1. Herbivory4.2. Bioerosion5. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 12. Ecology of Loxechinus albusJ. Vásquez1. Introduction2. Morphology3. Distribution4. Habitat and substrate preferences5. Food6. Reproductive ecology7. Population ecology8. Community ecology9. El Niño10. ConclusionReferencesChapter 13. Ecology of Paracentrotus lividusC.-. Boudouresque, M. Verlacque1. Introduction2. Distribution and habitat2.1. Habitat2.2. Densities2.3. Short- and long-term changes in density2.4. Co-occurring species3. Food and feeding3.1. Food preferences3.2. Consumption rate3.3. Ecological consequences of feeding3.4. Competition with other herbivores4. Movement and migration5. Mortality5.1. Predators5.2. Diseases and parasites5.3. Other causes of mortality6. Growth7. Reproduction7.1. Reproductive cycles7.2. Spawning7.3. Recruitment8. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 14. Ecology of Psammechinus miliarisM. Kelly, A. Hughes, E. Cook1. Appearance2. Distribution3. Habitat4. Density5. Population structure6. Food and trophic ecology7. Growth rates, ageing, and energy partitioning8. Reproduction9. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 15. Ecology of EchinometraT. R. McClanahan, N. Muthiga1. Introduction1.1. Species of Echinometra1.2. Biogeography and large-scale distribution1.3. Local distribution and abundance patterns2. Population biology and ecology2.1. Reproductive biology and ecology2.2. Feeding ecology2.3. Energetics2.4. Growth and longevity2.5. Pelagic larval dynamics2.6. Benthic population dynamics3. Community ecology and coexistence3.1. Competitive interactions with other herbivores3.2. Competitive interactions with other sea urchins3.3. Competitive interactions with fish3.4. Predation and predators4. Herbivory and grazing effects4.1. Herbivory4.2. Erosion of calcium carbonate5. ConclusionReferencesChapter 16. Ecology of Evechinus chloroticusM. Barker1. Introduction2. Geographic distribution3. Habitat4. Associated species4.1. Kelp4.2. Gastropods5. Feeding5.1. Diet5.2. Feeding rate6. Movement7. Reproduction7.1. Gametogenesis7.2. Reproductive cycle7.3. Reproductive output7.4. Size at sexual maturity7.5. Spawning8. Larval development9. Recruitment10. Population biology10.1. Growth10.2. Mortality10.3. Population geneticsReferencesChapter 17. Ecology of Heliocidaris erythrogrammaJohn K. Keesing1. Introduction2. Population genetics and colour variability3. Reproduction, development, settlement and recruitment4. Growth and age5. Movement and feeding6. Influence on benthic plants, occurrence of urchin barrens and feeding fronts7. Predators, parasites, commensals and other ecological interactions8. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 18. Ecology of Strongylocentrotus droebachiensisRobert Scheibling, B. Hatcher1. Distribution and abundance1.1. Geographic range1.2. Population density and spatial distribution1.3. Physiological tolerance limits2. Food and feeding2.1. Food preferences and nutrition2.2. Feeding behavior2.3. Feeding rates3. Growth3.1. Determinants of growth3.2. Growth rates4. Reproduction4.1. Reproductive timing4.2. Gonad growth and gamete production4.3. Fertilization rates5. Settlement and recruitment5.1. Larval development and settlement behaviour5.2. Temporal and spatial patterns of settlement5.3. Temporal and spatial patterns of recruitment5.4. Early post-settlement mortality6. Predation6.1. Predators6.2. Behavioural responses to predators6.3. Predation as a mechanism of population regulation7. Disease and parasitism7.1. Microbial pathogens7.2. Macroparasitic infections8. Mortality due to abiotic factors9. Ecological roleReferencesChapter 19. Ecology of Strongylocentrotus franciscanus and Strongylocentrotus purpuratusLaura Rodgers-Bennett1. Introduction2. Sea urchin grazing and kelp forest ecosystems3. Growth and survival3.1. Growth3.2. Survival3.3. Aging4. Reproduction5. Fertilization6. Larvae6.1. Larval period6.2. Blastulae and larval behavior6.3. Larval cloning7. Settlement and recruitment8. Population regulation8.1. Competition8.2. Predation8.3. Disease8.4. Physical factors and ocean warming9. Genetics10. Fisheries10.1. West coast fisheries10.2. Fishery experiments10.3. Fishery enhancement10.4. Gonad enhancement11. Fishery management12. Conservation12.1. Metapopulation dynamics12.2. Sea urchins as ecosystem engineers12.3. Ecosystem managementReferencesChapter 20. Ecology of Strongylocentrotus intermediusYukio Agatsuma1. Introduction2. Geographic distribution3. Reproduction3.1. Size at maturity3.2. Difference in reproductive cycle among localities3.3. Fixation of reproductive cycle in each area3.4. Spawning structure4. Larval ecology4.1. Occurrence4.2. Distribution4.3. Length of larval life and survival5. Settlement and metamorphosis6. Food and feeding after settlement6.1. Food habit6.2. Food ingestion and absorption6.3. Diurnal changes in food intake6.4. Chemical stimulus on feeding7. Growth7.1. Longevity and growth rings7.2. Energy transformation to growth7.3. Differences in growth among localities7.4. Food and growth7.5. Water temperature and growth7.6. Gonadal growth8. Habitat8.1. Juvenile habitat8.2. Habitat structure9. Community ecology9.1. Bio-economy9.2. Grazing effect on algal communities10. Population dynamics10.1. Fluctuation in larval occurrence10.2. Juvenile recruitment10.3. Fluctuation in gonadal growth10.4 Effect of fisheries on population size10.5 Predation11. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 21. Ecology of Strongylocentrotus nudusYukio Agatsuma1. Introduction2. Geographic distribution3. Reproduction3.1. Reproductive cycle3.2. Spawning cues4. Larval ecology4.1. Occurrence4.2. Growth and survival5. Metamorphosis and settlement5.1. Algal communities5.2. Chemical inducer6. Food and feeding after settlement6.1. Food6.2. Food ingestion and absorption6.3. Food selectivity6.4. Chemical defense of algae6.5. Abiotic factors on feeding6.6. Foraging7. Growth7.1. Somatic growth7.2. Gonadal growth8. Habitat8.1. Juvenile habitat8.2. Movement9. Community ecology10. Population dynamics10.1. Recruitment of juveniles10.2. Annual fluctuations10.3. Decrease in population size11. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 22. Ecology of Hemicentrotus pulcherrimus, Pseudocentrotous depressus, and Anthocidaris crassispinaYukio Agatsuma1. Introduction2. Geographic distribution3. Reproduction3.1. Reproductive cycle3.2. Abiotic factors and maturation3.3. Spawning cue4. Larval ecology5. Settlement and metamorphosis5.1. Induction with algae5.2. Chemical inducer6. Food and feeding after settlement6.1. Food6.2. Feeding and food selectivity7. Growth7.1. Longevity and growth rings7.2. Somatic growth7.3. Gonadal growth8. Habitat9. Community ecology10. Population dynamics11. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 23. Ecology of LytechinusStephen A. Watts, James B. McClintock, John M. Lawrence1. The genus Lytechinus2. Habitats2.1. Lytechinus variegatus2.2. Lytechinus semituberculatus and Lytechinus pictus3. Abundance3.1. Lytechinus variegatus3.2. Lytechinus semituberculatus and Lytechinus pictus4. Factors influencing distribution and abundance4.1. Abiotic factors4.2. Biotic factors5. Food and feeding6. Growth and survival7. Reproduction7.1. Lytechinus variegatus7.2. Lytechinus pictus8. Larval ecology and recruitment9. Population ecology9.1. Predation9.2. Competition10. Community ecology11. ConclusionAcknowledgmentsReferencesvJohn M. Lawrence, Yukio Agatsuma1. The genus Tripneustes2. Distribution3. Habitats4. Behavior5. Food6. Growth7. Reproduction8. Recruitment9. Mortality10. Community10.1. Effects of feeding10.2. Competition10.3. Predation11. ConclusionsReferencesChapter 25. Sea-urchin roe cuisineJohn M. LawrenceReferences