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Fatty acids as tracers of trophic interactions between seston, mussels and biodeposits in a coastal embayment of mussel rafts in the proximity of fish cages
Irisarri, J.; Fernandez-Reiriz, M.; De Troch, M.; Labarta, U. (2014). Fatty acids as tracers of trophic interactions between seston, mussels and biodeposits in a coastal embayment of mussel rafts in the proximity of fish cages. Comp. Biochem. Physiol. (B Biochem. Mol. Biol.) 172-173: 105-115. dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cbpb.2014.04.006
In: Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology. Part B. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Pergamon: Oxford. ISSN 1096-4959, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keyword
    Marine
Author keywords
    Fatty acid biomarkers; Seston; Digestive gland; Mantle; Mussel feces

Authors  Top 
  • Irisarri, J.
  • Fernandez-Reiriz, M.
  • De Troch, M., more
  • Labarta, U.

Abstract
    We traced the food sources of mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis cultured in suspension in Ría Ares-Betanzos (N.W. Spain) by means of fatty acid (FA) biomarkers. The FA profile of seston, mussels' mantle, digestive gland and feces was analyzed during five seasons. Due to the proximity of a fish farm to the bivalve aquaculture site, we also tested if mussels and seston situated 170 m distant from the fish cages incorporated fish feed FA markers compared with samples obtained 550 m away. The principal FA in the mussels' organs were 16:0, 16:1?7, EPA (20:5?3) and DHA (22:6?3), while 16:0 predominated in the feces. Seasonal fluctuations in the seston composition were mirrored in the FA signature of mussels' organs and feces, although the digestive gland had the closest resemblance to the seston FA profile. In general, diatom and bacteria derived-biomarkers predominated in mussels' organs and feces during the upwelling period (spring–summer), while dinoflagellates were the dominant dietary source during downwelling (autumn–winter). The higher concentration of EPA and DHA in both organs and the feces compared with the seston suggested a preferential accumulation of these ?3 FA in the mussels' tissues. The results showed a lack of assimilation of fish feed FA biomarkers in the seston and mussel samples. This might be due to the dispersion of uneaten feed particles by high current velocity, substantial distance between the fish and mussel culture, the limited amount of nutrient waste released by the fish farm and dilution of feed particles in the large mussel standing stock.

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