Reproduction and growth of Mytilus edulis chilensis from the Falkland Islands
A.P. Gray, R. Seed and C.A. Richardson

Although widely distributed and locally abundant throughout much of the Falkland Islands, surprisingly little information is available for M. edulis in this particular part of its geographic range. In this paper we therefore document several ecologically important aspects of mussel populations from three sites. Annual reproductive cycles were determined stereologically from stained histological preparations. Reproductive development proceeded through early to late spring (September-December), whilst spawning occurred mainly during the southern summer (January-February). The age and growth rate of individual mussels were determined from microgrowth bands present in acetate peel replicas of shell sections. Growth curves fitted using the von Bertalanffy growth model predicted L and k values ranging between 52.9 and 73.6 mm and 0.419 and 0.579, respectively. Population structure varied significantly between study sites, and there was no congruence between modal distributions and the size at age estimated from shell sections. The incidence (ranging from 2-46%) of a hitherto unidentified isopod living within the mantle cavity, and its effect on host condition, are described.

Contents of this volume Sci. Mar. 61(Suppl.2) : 39-48 Back PDF
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