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Keywords:

  • zebra mussel;
  • settlement;
  • surface curvature;
  • surface orientation;
  • aggregation

Abstract

Dreissena polymorpha recruitment on artificial substrates was studied in the Włocławek Dam Reservoir (the Vistula River, Poland). Densities on downstream and upstream vertical surfaces of plastic plates differed significantly from each other, with the former settled by more individuals. Vertical and horizontal plates, as well as upper and lower horizontal surfaces were settled similarly. In another experiment mussels settled on flat, convex and concave glass surfaces, directed upstream or downstream. Among the upstream surfaces, the concave ones were the most densely settled. No significant differences in mussel recruitment on various downstream surfaces were found. Thus, substrate shape influenced mussels only when they were exposed to water flow. Mussels were aggregated (Lloyd index > 1) along all the edges of the horizontal plates and along the upper edge of the vertical ones. Such distribution was probably caused by the post-settlement movement of metamorphosed individuals. (© 2005 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim)