Albacore are polygynandrous. They spawn as a group by simply releasing their eggs and sperm into the water.
Mating System: polygynandrous (promiscuous)
Albacore are an iteroparous species that breed seasonally. Adults make a spawning migration toward more tropical waters during the summer months (April to September in the Northern Hemisphere, October to March in the Southern Hemisphere). Females lay eggs that are fertilized externally (oviparous). Albacore tend to scatter their eggs throughout the ocean. A 20 kg female can produce 2 to 3 million eggs in two batches. However, this varies by size. Albacore reach sexual maturity at about five years of age.
Breeding interval: Albacore breed once yearly
Breeding season: Albacore breed July to September in the Northern Hemisphere, October to March in the Southern Hemisphere
Average number of offspring: 2 million.
Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female): 5 years.
Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male): 5 years.
Key Reproductive Features: iteroparous ; seasonal breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; fertilization (External ); broadcast (group) spawning; oviparous
Besides the contribution of their gametes and the energy expended migrating to spawning grounds, there is no parental investment by albacore.
Parental Investment: no parental involvement
- Collette, B., C. Nauen. 1983. Scombrids of the world. An annotated and illustrated catalogue of tunas, mackerels, bonitos and related species known to date. FAO species catalogue, 2: 137.
- Santiago, J., H. Arrizabalaga. 2005. An integrated growth study for North Atlantic albacore (Thunnus alalunga Bonn. 1788). Journal of Marine Science, 62: 740-749.