MUSEO ARGENTINO DE CIENCIAS NATURALES "BERNARDINO RIVADAVIA"
Unidad Ejecutora - UE
The clam Neilonella sulculata in San Jorge Gulf (Argentina, Southwest Atlantic): spatial distribution pattern and inverse relationship between size and density
LIUZZI, M.G.; LÓPEZ GAPPA, J.; OLIVIERI, V.
MARINE BIOLOGY RESEARCH
TAYLOR & FRANCIS AS
Lugar: Londres; Año: 2016 vol. 12 p. 621 - 621
Neilonella sulculata is a dominant bivalve on muddy bottoms of the continental shelf and gulfs off Argentina (Southwest Atlantic). Two benthic surveys performed in 2007 and 2009 in San Jorge Gulf, a depositional area characterized by silt/clay sediments, gave us the opportunity to test whether the population of this clam displays a significant spatial structure and to analyse if there is an inverse relationship between size and density. Density, biomass and size?frequency distribution displayed significant spatial structure, being positively autocorrelated at the smallest spatial scales (c. 1.7?14/17 km). Biomass also showed spatial contagion at scales of 25?33 km. A substantial increase in density and biomass occurred between 2007 and 2009. Empty valves in the sediment showed that the maximum size attained by the species may exhibit considerable variation at relatively short temporal scales. Regardless of temporal changes in density and biomass, the spatial structure of these variables remained stable. In densely populated areas, shell size decreased with increasing density, suggesting a density-dependent control of growth. A clear north?south increase in density and biomass was detected, which might be related to a gradient in food availability caused by a thermohaline frontal system associated with wind-related upwelling.