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The effect of energy reserves and cryoprotectants on overwintering mortality in Mercenaria mercenaria notata (Say 1822) at two tidal levels
Gionet, C.; Mayrand, E.; Landry, T. (2009). The effect of energy reserves and cryoprotectants on overwintering mortality in Mercenaria mercenaria notata (Say 1822) at two tidal levels. Aquacult. Int. 17(6): 589-605. dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10499-008-9229-z
In: Aquaculture International. Springer: London. ISSN 0967-6120, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keywords
    Energy reserves; Growth; Marine molluscs; Mortality; Overwintering; Mercenaria mercenaria (Linnaeus, 1758) [WoRMS]; Canada, New Brunswick [Marine Regions]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Gionet, C.
  • Mayrand, E.
  • Landry, T.

Abstract
    The objective of this study is to identify possible causes of the high winter mortality noted in juvenile Mercenaria mercenaria notata in eastern Canada. The percentage mortality, shell growth, concentration of energy reserves, and production of cryoprotectant molecules were compared between notata and native quahogs kept at intertidal and subtidal levels. Overwintering mortality of the notata strain reached 47.2% and was 3–9 times higher than that of the native strain. Shell increment was higher in the native than in the notata strain and also at the intertidal than at the subtidal level. The quahogs from the subtidal zone had a higher concentration of protein than those from the intertidal zone in August and April but a lower concentration in February. The notata strain had a lower concentration of lipids and glucose (34.9 and 0.21 mg g−1 dry weight) than the native strain (42.2 and 0.28 mg g−1 dry weight). Thermal hysteresis was detected in none of the quahog groups. High winter mortality in the notata strain seems to be caused, in part, by a lower capacity to stock lipid compared with the native strain. The higher concentration of glucose in the native strain may favour survival in cold water by helping to reduce the freezing point of the animals’ fluids.

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