Age and growth of the endangered fan mussel Pinna nobilis in the western Mediterranean Sea
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DisciplineCiencias del Mar
The present work, which is the first comparative study of the growth of the fan mussel Pinna nobilis in the western Mediterranean, encompasses 12 populations of this species living in different environments in France and Spain. Two hundred nine shells were processed and used to obtain growth records from the posterior adductor muscle scar. Size-at-age data were fitted to the Von Bertalanffy growth model. Considerable variability in growth pa-rameters and age was detected among the populations. The results show that the only two fan mussel populations remaining in Spain, which live in an estuary and a coastal lagoon, occupy habitats that are optimal for fast growth, but individuals show low longevity, complicating the long-term conservation of the species. Multivariate analyses groups the populations into three groups (SO, EO and LG), and a general model is proposed for each group; the model can be used as an approximation to calculate the ages of individuals living in similar environments.