Zostera marina is a seagrass species, commonly known as eelgrass, that is found on both coasts of the United States, as well as in Europe. Unfortunately, Zostera is disappearing all over the place, including right here in New York. This could have devastating impacts on animals that rely on eelgrass as foraging grounds, or, as is the case with scallops, use it as a refuge from predation. This is its story, as seen through the eyes of an aspiring graduate student...

Monday, October 22, 2007

Project Break Down

Well, I took my grass mats out of the water last week. Not only did I remove my scallops, I suction dredged the mats and took them out as well. I haven't finished measuring the scallops or measured the dry weights, but soon I hope to have those results worked out. Tomorrow I am going to finally go through the suction samples and next week I am going to visually inspect the mats to see if I missed any juvenile scallops, predators, etc and then stow them for next year. One exciting thing I did notice though, while shucking my scallops I noticed that many of them still had gonads. Usually the gonads are spent this time of year, but for many of my scallops, they were not. This might be due to water temperatures still being so warm, or may be mere coincidence. Whatever the case, this supports the idea that there is a late fall spawn for bay scallops in Long Island. I will update once I have the data!

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