Virginia Institute of Marine Science
Journal of Shellfish Research
In order to assess the impact of Perkinsus marinus infection on oyster growth and mortality, oysters were raised in floating rafts at six sites around Chesapeake Bay. The sites were comprised of two low salinity sites (8-10%0), two moderate salinity (12-15%0) sites and two high salinity sites (16-20%0). Oyster growth was monitored biweekly along with various water qualities including temperature and salinity. Condition index was measured monthly and disease diagnosis was perfonned bimonthly. Oyster growth was initially greatest at the high salinity sites but was subsequently retarded by Perkinsus infection at both the moderate and high salinity sites (where the parasite was more prevalent). Comparison of pre-infection and post-infection growth rates between sites showed that the reduction in growth rate was mitigated by lower salinity. Condition index was not related to salinity or site but was significantly reduced by P. marinus infection. Reduction in condition, however, was not associated with increased mortality. Mortality was also less related to salinity or temperature than it was to infection history (previous infection). Groups which incurred high infection prevalences and intensities exhibited low mortality during their first year, but suffered high mortality during the following year. The results are discussed in relation to management and aquacultural practices and their relation to genetics and selective breeding of disease resistant oysters.
oyster, growth, Perkinsus, disease, mortality, Chesapeake Bay
Paynter, Kennedy T. and Burreson, Eugene M., Effects Of Perkinsus marinus Infection In The Eastern Oyster, Crassostrea virginica: Ii. Disease Development And Impact On Growth Rate At Different Salinities (1991). Journal of Shellfish Research, 10(2), 425-431.