A clump of Blue Mussels
Blue mussels.
Photo: Inductiveload/Wikimedia Commons

Blue mussels – interactions between populations in natural and artificial habitats

Research project

Short description

Blue mussels Mytilus spp. are found in various benthic environments on the Swedish west coast, but are also very common in mussel-farms and on artificial structures such as piers. There are signs that mussels are declining in natural environments, but no such tendencies are visible in farms or on piers in the same areas.

The purpose of this project is to get an overall picture of the mussel populations along the Swedish coast. We will estimate population size and distribution of mussels in natural and artificial environments, including mussel-farms. We will also model the distribution of larvae and investigate their survival in different environments and areas, to test hypotheses about ecological and genetic effects from farmed mussels on natural populations.

The results will contribute to a scientifically based management of mussels.