Most female Menippe mercenaria sexually mature around two years old, and are most likely to breed between the spring and fall. The female carries her eggs in a sac-like mass containing 160,000 to 1,000,000 eggs. Optimum water temperature for ovarian development is around 28 deg Menippe mercenariabreeds year-round, although the peak mating season is from August to September in southern Florida. Males may mate with recently molted females.
Breeding season: Year round
Range number of offspring: 160000 to 1000000.
Range gestation period: 9 to 14 days.
Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female): 2 years.
Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male): 2 years.
Key Reproductive Features: year-round breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); fertilization (Internal ); oviparous
The female carries her eggs in a sac-like mass containing 160,000 to 1,000,000 eggs until they hatch.
Parental Investment: pre-fertilization (Provisioning, Protecting: Female); pre-hatching/birth (Protecting: Female)
- Gulf Shores Marine Fisheries Commission, 2001. "Summary table of the Stone Crab, *Menippe mercenaria*,: Life History for the Gulf of Mexico" (On-line). Accessed 11/04/04 at http://www.gsmfc.org/pubs/habitat/tables/stonecrab.pdf.
- Williams, A. 1984. Shrimps, lobsters, and crabs of the Atlantic coast of the Eastern United States, Maine to Florida. Washington, D. C.: Smithsonian Institution.