A species is considered semelparous if it is characterized by a single reproductive episode before death.

A classic example of a semelparous organism is Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.), which lives for many years in the ocean before swimming to the freshwater stream of its birth, spawning, and dying. Other semelparous animals include many insects, including some species of butterflies, cicadas, and mayflies, many arachnids, and some molluscs such as some species of squid and octopus.

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