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Age, growth rate and season of recruitment of Pinna nobilis (L) in the Croatian Adriatic determined from Mg:Ca and Sr:Ca shell profiles
Richardson, C.A.; Peharda, M.; Kennedy, H.; Kennedy, P.; Onofri, V. (2004). Age, growth rate and season of recruitment of Pinna nobilis (L) in the Croatian Adriatic determined from Mg:Ca and Sr:Ca shell profiles. J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol. 299(1): 1-16. dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jembe.2003.08.012
In: Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology. Elsevier: New York. ISSN 0022-0981, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keywords
    Age determination; Growth; Ratios; Pinna nobilis Linnaeus, 1758 [WoRMS]; Mediterranean [Marine Regions]; Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Richardson, C.A., more
  • Peharda, M., more
  • Kennedy, H.
  • Kennedy, P.
  • Onofri, V.

Abstract
    Stable oxygen isotope analyses of U-shaped spines removed at intervals along profiles of the outer shell surface of Pinna nobilis (L) were used to reconstruct sea surface temperature (SST) and validate the periodicity of adductor muscle scar rings on the inner shell surface. Elemental ratios (Mg:Ca and Sr:Ca) of spines, determined using Inductively Coupled Plasma-Atomic Emission Spectrometry (ICP-AES), were compared with the SST estimated from the stable oxygen isotopic composition of the shell deposited at the same time. The elemental ratios and the stable oxygen isotopic composition recorded in the shell were significantly correlated: Mg:Ca RATIO=0.0002 (seawater temperature)+0.0095 (gamma²=0.445), Sr:Ca RATIO=0.00005 (seawater temperature)+0.0014 (gamma²=0.887). The ratios in the spines were highest when the SST was warmest during July and August and were lowest between January and February when the SST was minimal. The positions of the first and second adductor muscle scar rings, unlike the later rings, are often difficult to discern, and in large shells they are obscured by nacre. Seasonal patterns in the elemental ratios were used to characterise the age in regions of the outer shell surface corresponding to the first two years of shell growth. A combination of both elemental ratios and muscle scar rings were used to estimate the age and hence the growth rate of P. nobilis from three locations in the Croatian Adriatic. Annual cycles of shell growth, inferred from the seasonal pattern in the element ratios, were used to determine the season of recruitment of fan mussels at several localities along the Croatian coastline. Pinnids generally settled during late autumn and winter although one shell from Mali Ston Bay settled during the summer. P. nobilis from Mali Ston Bay exhibited the fastest growth reaching a length of ~60 cm and an age of 9 years, whereas those from Malo Jezero grew the slowest attaining a length of ~50 cm at 12 years of age.

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