Geoduck aquaculture and the environment: Recent findings and future directions

P. Sean McDonald:

Are transient and resident communities affected by geoduck culture?

The study looked at the disturbance caused by planting geoduck and the disturbance caused by the harvest of the geoducks.

Some transient species, (sea stars, crabs, cockles) showed an increase in abundance when culture gear was present while moon snails, flat fish and hermit crabs were more abundant in areas without gear.  Once gear was removed the transient communities returned to pre-gear placement assemblages.

When gear is present the resident polychete species show an increase while other species show no change  Post harvest resident communities showed no consistent patter with most species showing no change or an increase.

Transient data indicate post gear removal decreases transient species/taxa but they do seem to recover relatively quickly.