Larval and post-larval vertical distribution of the mussel Mytilus edulis in the white sea

S. V. Dobretsov, G. Miron*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Citations (Scopus)


The vertical distribution of veligers, pediveligers and post-larvae of the mussel Mytilus edulis L. was examined in Kandalakshsky Gulf (White Sea), Russia. Plankton samples showed that about 65% of all planktonic larvae were collected from a depth of 1.5 to 3 m. Maximum numbers of veligers were found at 3 m, immediately above the thermocline. The vertical distribution of veligers was stable throughout the study. The vertical distribution of pediveligers, however, varied over time. Pediveligers were mostly observed at 3 m before settlement peaked while they migrated closer to the water surface (1.5 m) during the settlement period. Pediveliger concentrations were correlated positively with small phytoplanktonic cell (<150 μm) and dissolved organic matter concentrations before settlement peaked. Both factors were correlated negatively with pediveliger concentrations during the settlement period. Newly settled post-larvae mainly colonized settlement panels situated at 1.5 m below the water surface (ca 70% of total post-larvae abundance). These results support the hypothesis that planktonic larvae of M. edulis change their vertical distribution in relation to larval stages, which in turn, increases settlement success.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-187
Number of pages9
JournalMarine Ecology Progress Series
Publication statusPublished - Aug 20 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Habitat selection
  • Larvae
  • Mussel
  • Mytilus edulis
  • Settlement
  • Vertical distribution
  • White Sea

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology


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