Document Detail

Biological characteristics of parasitic Nepinnotheres novaezelandiae within a Perna canaliculus farm.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23047192     Owner:  NLM     Status:  In-Data-Review    
Pea crabs are commercially significant parasites in the aquaculture production of bivalves in many parts of the world. However, there is scant information available on the biology of these important parasites in aquaculture. The population structure, sex ratio, and breeding status were determined for the pea crab Nepinnotheres novaezelandiae residing in a typical green-lipped mussel Perna canaliculus farm in New Zealand. Of the 324 crabs randomly sampled, there were significantly more female (82.4%) than male (17.6%) crabs found. The vast majority of crabs (87.0%) were sexually mature and of these, females comprised 86.4% and males 13.6%. However, the sex ratio of immature crabs was relatively even, suggesting that male crabs may have higher mortality while searching for mates. Crab size was highly variable, indicating that recruitment to mussels in the farm was continuous. Carapace width ranged from 4.00 to 11.5 mm, with males tending to be smaller with a mean (±SE) carapace width of 6.31 ± 0.16 mm versus females with a carapace width of 8.03 ± 0.06 mm. The crabs did not show any preference for parasitizing mussels of different sexes. Despite the fact that the mussels were only 10 mo old, most female crabs were sexually mature (Stage V) and 89.3% were gravid. The mean (±SE) clutch size was 2592 ± 579 and clutch size was directly associated with female carapace width. The mussel farm pea crab population was estimated at 126390 ± 14144 individuals, including 93000 gravid females carrying a total of over 241 million eggs. Overall, the results show that pea crabs rapidly colonize farmed mussels and mature quickly to establish a significant breeding population within the mussel farm, with larval output capable of infecting nearby mussel farms as well as wild populations of bivalves.
Oliver Trottier; Andrew G Jeffs
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Diseases of aquatic organisms     Volume:  101     ISSN:  0177-5103     ISO Abbreviation:  Dis. Aquat. Org.     Publication Date:  2012 Oct 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-10-10     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8807037     Medline TA:  Dis Aquat Organ     Country:  Germany    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  61-8     Citation Subset:  IM    
Leigh Marine Laboratory, University of Auckland, Warkworth 0941, New Zealand.
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