Spatial and temporal changes in abundance of the infaunal bivalve Soletellina alba (Lamark, 1818) during a time of drought in the seasonally-closed Hopkins River Estuary, Victoria Australia

Matthews, Ty 2006, Spatial and temporal changes in abundance of the infaunal bivalve Soletellina alba (Lamark, 1818) during a time of drought in the seasonally-closed Hopkins River Estuary, Victoria Australia, Estuarine coastal and shelf science, vol. 66, no. 1-2, pp. 13-20.

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Title Spatial and temporal changes in abundance of the infaunal bivalve Soletellina alba (Lamark, 1818) during a time of drought in the seasonally-closed Hopkins River Estuary, Victoria Australia
Author(s) Matthews, Ty
Journal name Estuarine coastal and shelf science
Volume number 66
Issue number 1-2
Start page 13
End page 20
Publisher Academic Press
Place of publication New York, N.Y.
Publication date 2006-01
ISSN 0272-7714
1096-0015
Keyword(s) Benthos
Bivalve
El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO)
Intermittent estuary
Mollusc
Soft sediments
Soletellina alba
Summary The infaunal bivalve Soletellina alba is susceptible to mass mortalities during annual winter flooding in the Hopkins River Estuary, southern Australia. Periods of low salinity (≤1) are the likely cause of these mass mortality events, which can occur in seasonally-closed estuaries when high winter flows are sufficient to flush all salt water from the estuary. Core samples of S. alba were collected from two water depths across four times and at three sites near the mouth of the estuary. Minimal to zero abundances of large S. alba (>1 mm) were expected to be sampled, particularly at the shallower water depth, during a typical winter flood event. However, the present study occurred during a period of drought, which led to the absence of winter flooding. This absence of winter flooding prevented the occurrence of lethal salinities (i.e. ≤1) in the estuary during this period and a greater number of living S. alba adults were sampled. Abundances of juvenile and adult S. alba were still variable, even in the absence of winter flooding, and reflected an interaction between date, site and water depth. However, no mass mortalities of adults were observed during the drought conditions in contrast to what occurs during typical winter flood events and provides support for the hypothesis that winter flooding is responsible for past mass mortalities.
Language eng
Field of Research 060205 Marine and Estuarine Ecology (incl Marine Ichthyology)
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2005, Elsevier Ltd
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30003854

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Life and Environmental Sciences
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