Recruitment of the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas in a shellfish-exploited Mediterranean lagoon: discovery, driving factors and a favorable environmental window

Type Article
Date 2017-08
Language English
Author(s) Lagarde FranckORCID1, Roque D'Orbcastel EmmanuelleORCID1, Ubertini Martin1, Mortreux Serge1, Bernard Ismael2, Fiandrino Annie1, Chiantella Claude1, Bec Beatrice3, Roques Cecile3, Bonnet Delphine3, Miron Gilles4, Richard Marion1, Pouvreau StephaneORCID5, Lett Christophe6
Affiliation(s) 1 : IFREMER, UMR MARBEC, F-34200 Sete, France.
2 : Eureka Modelisat, F-22740 Lezardrieux, France.
3 : Univ Montpellier, UMR MARBEC, F-34095 Montpellier, France.
4 : Univ Moncton, Moncton, NB E1A 3E9, Canada.
5 : IFREMER, UMR LEMAR, Technopole Brest Iroise, F-29280 Plouzane, France.
6 : IRD, UMI Ummisco, F-34200 Sete, France.
Source Marine Ecology Progress Series (0171-8630) (Inter-research), 2017-08 , Vol. 578 , P. 1-17
DOI 10.3354/meps12265
WOS© Times Cited 18
Keyword(s) Crassostrea gigas, Oyster spat, Pediveliger, Metamorphosis, Recruitment, Oligo trophication, Larval ecology

In the context of increasing demand for environmental recovery, aquatic systems may face the challenge of evolving under oligotrophication. This is the case in Mediterranean lagoons, in particular the shellfish-farmed Thau lagoon in France, where we studied recruitment of the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas. Oyster spat and environmental parameters were monitored at several sampling sites for 3 yr (2012 to 2014) using an original method with a temporal overlap deployment of collectors to study pre- and post-settlement processes and to identify the best conditions for recruitment. Contrary to the ‘no Pacific oyster reproduction’ paradigm in Mediterranean lagoons, our study showed that recruitment of this introduced species is possible in the Thau lagoon at levels comparable to those in other traditional French breeding basins. We identified a favorable environmental window for recruitment characterized by high water temperature (>26.5°C) and high nanophytoplankton and Chaetoceros spp. abundances (>4.3 × 106 and 345 × 103 cells l-1, respectively). In these favorable conditions, we hypothesize that the ecosystem functions as an autotrophic system, in contrast to the heterotrophic system that characterizes unfavorable conditions. Under heterotrophic conditions, high abundances of mixotrophic and heterotrophic organisms (ciliates and dinoflagellates) limited the metamorphosis of C. gigas larvae, leading to poor recruitment. This study provides new knowledge on the reproduction of the Pacific oyster in a Mediterranean lagoon under warming and oligotrophication. The shellfish industry will profit from the discovery of spatfields to develop new nursery practices that are eco-friendly and limit risks of transfers with other spatfall areas.

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Lagarde Franck, Roque D'Orbcastel Emmanuelle, Ubertini Martin, Mortreux Serge, Bernard Ismael, Fiandrino Annie, Chiantella Claude, Bec Beatrice, Roques Cecile, Bonnet Delphine, Miron Gilles, Richard Marion, Pouvreau Stephane, Lett Christophe (2017). Recruitment of the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas in a shellfish-exploited Mediterranean lagoon: discovery, driving factors and a favorable environmental window. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 578, 1-17. Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :