|Elimination of animals with best growth potential as a possible effect of the culling of Mercenaria mercenaria notata (L.) larvae in hatchery procedure|
|Gionet, C.; Mayrand, E.; Landry, T. (2010). Elimination of animals with best growth potential as a possible effect of the culling of Mercenaria mercenaria notata (L.) larvae in hatchery procedure. Aquacult. Int. 18(5): 801-812. dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10499-009-9298-7|
|In: Aquaculture International. Springer: London. ISSN 0967-6120, more|
Growth; Mortality; ; Marine
The Mercenaria mercenaria notata line was introduced into the Canadian Atlantic provinces in the late 1990s because of its fast growth rate when compared with that of the current native line. The purpose of this study was to compare the development of two groups of M. mercenaria notata, according to the initial size of the individuals, in order to check whether the current hatchery practice of keeping only the largest larvae may ultimately eliminate the best performing animals. The larvae were raised and sorted by size according to standard hatchery practices. On the tenth day post-fertilization, the two larval size groups were formed. The “initially smaller” (IS) and the “initially larger” (IL) animals were grown separately. Mortality, shell length and energy reserves were measured for both groups at three stages: veliger, post-settling and juvenile. The observed mortality in the two groups was low varying from 8.1 to 19.6%. The IS animals had a higher shell growth rate (18.2 μm/day) when compared to the IL group (12.7 μm/day) with the result that at the end of the experiment, the IS animals were larger than the IL. In both groups, the lipid and protein concentrations diminished rapidly during the veliger stage but faster in the IL group. The glycogen level remained at the limit of detection for all the three stages. The use of energy reserves followed a different pattern according to the group size. This study indicates that culling would have led us to discard the animals which in fact have the best growth potential in that their rate of shell growth is the highest.