Pisaster ochraceous is mainly dioecious. The male gametes develop, but later only females ones are produced. During a transitional period, both eggs and sperm are produced. A pair of gonads branches into each arm off a circular genital strand located along the oral inner surface of the disc. Each gonad looks like a feathery cluster of tubules. During maturation of the gametes, the gonads greatly increase in size, pushing into the perivisceral cavity of the arms, often right up to the ends of the arms. The gonopores of the individual gonads open at the bases of the arms.
Breeding season: Spring
Key Reproductive Features: gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; fertilization (External ); broadcast (group) spawning
There is no parental investment beyond spawning.
Parental Investment: pre-fertilization (Provisioning)
- Grzimeck, B. 1972. Grzimeck's Animal Life Encyclopedia Volume 3 Mollusks and Echnoderms. New York, Cincinnati, Chicago: Van Nostrand Reinhold Company.