MEPS 353:137-146 (2008)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/meps07162

Seasonal changes in C, N and P budgets of green-lipped mussels Perna viridis and removal of nutrients from fish farming in Hong Kong

Qin-Feng Gao1, Wen-Zhe Xu2, Xiao-Shou Liu2, Siu Gin Cheung2, Paul K. S. Shin2,3,*

1College of Fisheries, Ocean University of China, 5 Yushan Road, Qingdao City, Shandong Province 266003, China
2Department of Biology and Chemistry, City University of Hong Kong, Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon, Hong Kong SAR
3Centre for Coastal Pollution and Conservation, City University of Hong Kong, Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon, Hong Kong SAR
*Corresponding author. Email:

ABSTRACT: Fish farming activities release substantial wastes, including uneaten fish feed, faecal pellets and dissolved excretory products, resulting in nutrient pollution and subsequent deterioration of water quality in surrounding waters. Owing to the nature of their high filtration rate and high population density, filter-feeding green-lipped mussels reared in fish culture waters can take up particulate matter with considerable efficiency; hence, the farming wastes are removed. The present study evaluated the feasibility and capacity of using the green-lipped mussel Perna viridis as a biofilter to remove farming wastes from fish rafts. Spats of green-lipped mussels were transplanted to artificial reefs deployed under fish farms in Hong Kong. After a 1 yr period of growth and acclimatization, the nutrient scope for growth (SFG) of the transplanted mussels was quantified in situ through a series of bimonthly measurements of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus changes. The metabolic acquisition and expenditure of mussels exhibited considerable temporal fluctuation during the study period, owing to changes in exogenous environmental conditions such as food availability, water temperature and dissolved oxygen levels, and autogenous physiological status such as the reproductive cycle. For a standard Perna viridis of 70 mm shell length, the average SFG of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus was 170.9, 18.6 and 4.3 µg h–1, respectively. As a result, the annual nutrient assimilation capacities of a 70 mm mussel for carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus were 1476.9, 160.3 and 36.7 mg, respectively. Based on the practical culture density of mussels in southeast Asia, the assimilation capacity has the potential to remove fish farm wastes at mariculture sites.


KEY WORDS: Fish farming waste · Perna viridis · Filter-feeding · Biofiltration · Nutrient enrichment · Nutrient cycling


Full text in pdf format 
Cite this article as: Gao Q, Xu W, Liu X, Cheung SG, Shin PKS (2008) Seasonal changes in C, N and P budgets of green-lipped mussels Perna viridis and removal of nutrients from fish farming in Hong Kong. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 353:137-146. https://doi.org/10.3354/meps07162

Export citation
Mail this link - Contents Mailing Lists - RSS
- -