Effect of biofilm age on settlement of Mytilus edulis.

Abstract : Biofilm ageing is commonly assumed to improve mussel settlement on artificial substrata, but the structure and taxonomic composition of biofilms remains unclear. In the present study, multi-species biofilms were characterized at different ages (1, 2, and 3 weeks) and their influence on settlement of the blue mussel, Mytilus edulis, was tested in the field. As biofilms can constitute a consistent food resource for larvae, the lipid quality, defined as the proportion of related essential fatty acids, may be a selection criterion for settlement. Overall mussel settlement increased on biofilms older than 1 week, and the enhanced settlement corresponded to the abundance and composition of the biofilm community, rather than to essential fatty acid levels. However, during a pulse of phytoplankton, the positive influence of biofilm was not detected, suggesting that pelagic cues overwhelmed those associated with biofilms. The influence of biofilms on mussel settlement could be more crucial when planktonic resources are limited.
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Nicolas Toupoint, Vani Mohit, Isabelle Linossier, Nathalie Bourgougnon, Bruno Myrand, et al.. Effect of biofilm age on settlement of Mytilus edulis.. Biofouling, Taylor & Francis, 2012, 28 (9), pp.985-1001. ⟨10.1080/08927014.2012.725202⟩. ⟨hal-00857492⟩



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