AB 25:107-119 (2016)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/ab00661

Field clearance of an intertidal bivalve bed: relative significance of the co-occurring blue mussel Mytilus edulis and Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas

Bent Vismann1,*, Mark Wejlemann Holm2, Jens Kristian Davids2, Per Dolmer3,4, Morten Foldager Pedersen2, Elisa Blanda2, Helle Torp Christensen3,5, Pernille Nielsen1,6, Benni Winding Hansen2

1Marine Biological Section, University of Copenhagen, Strandpromenaden 5, 3000 Helsingør, Denmark
2Department of Science and Environment, Roskilde University, Universitetsvej 1, 4000 Roskilde, Denmark
3National Institute of Aquatic Resources, Danish Technical University, Jægersborg Allé 1, 2920 Charlottenlund, Denmark
4Present address: Orbicon, Jens Juuls Vej 16, 8260 Viby, Denmark 5Present address: Greenland Institute of Natural Resources, Kivioq 2, 3900 Nuuk, Greenland 6Present address: National Institute of Aquatic Resources, Danish Technical University, Jægersborg Allé 1, 2920 Charlottenlund, Denmark
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: At an approximately 12000 m2 sheltered intertidal bivalve bed in the western part of the Limfjord, Denmark, the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas co-occurs with the blue mussel Mytilus edulis. The relative significance of the impact of the 2 species on phytoplankton density during a tidal cycle was estimated by combining field measurements of clearance rates and modelling of the bivalve bed (topography, biomass distribution, temporal and spatial water coverage and depth). The average density of C. gigas and M. edulis was 35 ± 36 and 1001 ± 685 ind. m-2, respectively. The water volume cleared during a tidal cycle was estimated at 45838 m3, of which C. gigas and M. edulis contributed 9169 and 36669 m3, respectively. Therefore, M. edulis contributed 4 times as much as C. gigas to the bivalve bed’s clearance, and the 2 bivalves were estimated to clear the water volume 1.9 times during each tidal cycle. However, the estimated water column cleared during low tide is overestimated due to phytoplankton depletion. Hence, it is concluded that the bivalve bed clears the water close to 1 time each tidal cycle. This, together with a low dry weight of soft parts, indicates that the bivalve bed, in general, is food-limited.


KEY WORDS: Crassostrea gigas · Mytilus edulis · Clearance rate · Field measurements · Feeding activity · Intertidal bivalve bed


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Cite this article as: Vismann B, Wejlemann Holm M, Davids JK, Dolmer P and others (2016) Field clearance of an intertidal bivalve bed: relative significance of the co-occurring blue mussel Mytilus edulis and Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas. Aquat Biol 25:107-119. https://doi.org/10.3354/ab00661

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