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Effects of Temperature, Salinity, and Dissolved Oxygen on Survival of Triploid and Diploid Hard Clams, Mercenaria mercenaria

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PAGE 1

1 EFFECTS OF TEMPERATURE, SALINITY AND DISSOLVE D OXYGEN ON SURVIVAL OF TRIPLOID AND DIPLOID HARD CLAMS, Mercenaria mercenaria By ELISE ANN HOOVER A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLOR IDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF SCIENCE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2007

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2 2007 Elise Ann Hoover

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3 To my family for all their pa tience, support, and understanding.

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to thank my advisor, Dr. Shirle y Baker, for giving me the opportunity to conduct research under her guidance. I would also like to thank th e other principal investigators on this project, Dr. John Scarpa Leslie Sturmer, and Dr. Chuck Adams, for their advice and assistance in completing my research. In additi on, I would like to thank Dr. Derk Bergquist for all his advice on design and construction of th e aquaria systems used in this experiment. I would also like to thank my committee me mbers, Dr. Michael Allen and Dr. Patrick Baker, for their advice and support. Funding for this project was provided by Florid a Sea Grant and United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. Many thanks are due for project assistance by members of Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute, Eman El-Wazzan, Susan Laramo re, Angela Ledger, and Sandie Scarpa. I would also like to thank th e many undergraduate and graduate students of the University of Florida, especially Carla Beals, Jenn Bernatis, Ken Black, Megan Brennan, Chelsey Campbell, Jasmine Carastro, Jon Fajans, Jenn He lseth, Rick Kline, Mi chael Krasilovsky, Emily Mitchem, Shannon Osborn, Kelly Robinson, Emily Se nesac, Darlene Saindon, Michelle Tishler, and Kerry Weber. Special thanks go to my husband Jeff Hoover a nd my parents Joan and Tom Rothrock for all their assistance in th e lab and their support.

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5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...............................................................................................................4 LIST OF TABLES................................................................................................................. ..........7 LIST OF FIGURES................................................................................................................ .........8 ABSTRACT....................................................................................................................... ..............9 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION..................................................................................................................11 Aquaculture of Mercenaria mercenaria in Florida................................................................11 Description of Cedar Key a nd Environmental Factors...........................................................12 Description of Charlotte Harbor and Environmental Factors.................................................13 Anatomy and Behavior of Mercenaria mercenaria ...............................................................13 Physiology, Distribution and Survival of Mercenaria mercenaria ........................................14 Reproduction in Mercenaria mercenaria ...............................................................................16 Induction of Triploidy in Mercenaria mercenaria .................................................................17 Methods of Investigation....................................................................................................... .19 2 MATERIALS AND METHODS...........................................................................................23 Production and Grow-out History of Triploid and Diploid Hard Mercenaria mecenaria .....23 Tissue Sampling and Ploidy Determination of Triploid Mercenaria mercenaria .................24 Experimental Aquarium System Design................................................................................25 Individual Tanks..............................................................................................................2 5 Sump Tanks..................................................................................................................... 26 Seawater Storage.............................................................................................................27 Experimental Design of Tolerance Challenge........................................................................27 Acclimation of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mercenaria ........................................28 Health Assessment of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mercenaria .............................28 Water Quality Parameters in Aquarium Systems............................................................29 Data Analysis.................................................................................................................. ........30 3 RESULTS........................................................................................................................ .......32 Water Quality.................................................................................................................. ........32 Survival Analysis.............................................................................................................. ......32 Reburial Rates................................................................................................................. ........33 4 DISCUSSION..................................................................................................................... ....38

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6 APPENDIX: WATER QUALITY DATA....................................................................................45 LIST OF REFERENCES............................................................................................................. ..51 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH.........................................................................................................56

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7 LIST OF TABLES Table page 3-1 Water quality values averaged across treatments..............................................................35 A-1 Average water quality values fo r tanks in treatment 10 ppt, hypoxia...............................45 A-2 Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 10 ppt, normoxia.............................46 A-3 Average water quality values fo r tanks in treatment 25 ppt, hypoxia...............................47 A-4 Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 25 ppt, normoxia.............................48 A-5 Average water quality values fo r tanks in treatment 40 ppt, hypoxia...............................49 A-6 Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 40 ppt, normoxia.............................50

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8 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 1-1. Map of shellfish harvest areas for cl ams, mussels and oysters in Florida.........................20 1-2. Extreme water quality values recorded at the Gulf Jackson clam lease in Cedar Key, FL and the Sandfly Key clam l ease in Charlotte Harbor, FL............................................21 2-1. Experimental tanks........................................................................................................ .....30 2-2. Experimental system....................................................................................................... ...30 2-3. Examples of M. mercenaria siphon extension...................................................................30 2-4. M. mercenaria burial positions..........................................................................................31 2-5. Examples of gaping behavior and a dead clam..................................................................31 3-1. Percent cumulative survival of diploid and triploid hard clams, M. mercenaria ..............36 3-2. Scatter plot of the proportion of diploid and triploid hard clams, M. mercenaria that buried within 12 hours following placement on the surface..............................................37

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9 Abstract of Thesis Pres ented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science EFFECTS OF TEMPERATURE, SALINITY AND DISSOLVE D OXYGEN ON SURVIVAL OF TRIPLOID AND DIPLOID HARD CLAMS, Mercenaria mercenaria By Elise Ann Hoover May 2007 Chair: Shirley Baker Major: Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences High mortalities of cultured Mercenaria mercenaria the northern hard clam, have occurred along the west coast of Florida during the summer mont hs and are thought to be caused by low salinities, high temperatures, a nd low levels of dissolved oxygen. M. mercenaria also lose a substantial amount of en ergy through a spring spawning event. It is evident that an improvement in hard clam aquaculture is need ed, and triploidy may be a potential solution. Based on the energy reallocation hy pothesis, triploids will dive rt energy from reproduction to somatic growth resulting in a larg er and potentially hardier clam. Triploids were produced using cytochalasin B during meiosis II di vision and ploidy analysis confirme d triploid state. Triploids and sibling diploids were expos ed to salinities of 10, 25, and 40 ppt and dissolved oxygen levels of < 2 mgL-1 and > 5 mgL-1 with temperature constant at 32oC for 21 days. Observations of clam mortality, siphon extension, and burial were conducted at 12 hour interv als to assess lethal and sublethal treatment effects. Survival anal ysis was performed usi ng the Lifereg procedure available on SAS to test the difference in surv ival between triploids and diploids in each treatment. Survival of diploid and triploid M. mercenaria differed significantly in two of the treatments: 25 ppt hypoxia (P=0.0159) and 10 pp t hypoxia (P=0.0387). Burial rates decreased over the duration of the experiment in the 25 ppt hypoxia and 40 ppt hypoxia treatments,

PAGE 10

10 indicating a sublethal effect of hypoxia. There was an advantag e of triploidy in the 25 ppt hypoxia treatment, a range seen in the field; how ever the overall results of this experiment suggest that triploidy does not conf er an advantage for survival of M. mercenaria

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11 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION In Florida, the hard clam, Mercenaria mercenaria is an important aquaculture species for coastal residents in rura l areas on the east and west coasts (Figure 1-1), including Cedar Key and Charlotte Harbor (USDA 2004). In recent years, high clam mortalities have occurred along the west coast of Florida during the summer months and are thought to be caused by low salinities, high temperatures, and low levels of dissolved oxygen (Scarpa et al. 200 5). Prior to summer stressors, mature M. mercenaria are releasing a substantial amount of energy through an intense spring spawning event (Hesselman et al. 1989, Eversole 2001). It is evident that an improvement in hard clam stock is needed, and triploidy is a potential solution. Based on the energy reallocation hypothesis, triploid s should allocate little or no energy towards reproduction and will instead allocate the energy to somatic growth resulting in a larger and potentially hardier clam (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991). Since Flor ida already has fast gr owing clam populations, I examined whether triploidy would relate to a hardier clam, one with additional resources available with which to survive summer stressor events. Triploid and diploid M. mercenaria were challenged in a laboratory setti ng to determine differences in survival. Aquaculture of Mercenaria mercenaria in Florida Aquaculture of Mercenaria mercenaria is a multimillion dollar industry in the state of Florida, bringing in 13 million in net sa les in 2003, and 10.7 million in 2005 (USDA 2004, USDA 2006). There are three regions of Florida where hard clam aquaculture is concentrated, the Big Bend region of Dixie, Levy and Citrus counties; the south west region of Charlotte and Lee counties, and the central east region, of Volu sia, Brevard and Indian River counties (USDA 2002, USDA 2004). Cedar Key, in the Big Bend re gion and Charlotte Harbor in the southwest region are the main areas of clam aquaculture on the west coast of Florida.

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12 Techniques to improve hard clam aquaculture in the state of Florida were investigated by Menzel in the 1950s and 1960s (1962). Hard cl am aquaculture became more prevalent in the 1970s when attempts were made to supplement wild stock of M. mercenaria in the Indian River Lagoon (Philippakos et al. 2001). In 1991, as part of a job-re training program funded by the state, shellfish aquaculture was introduced to the west coast of Florid a and is now a primary source of income for its rural coastal residents (Colson & Stur mer 2000). In recent years, M mercenaria has become one of the most economically important aquaculture species in Floridas marine environment (Arnold et al. 2000). Description of Cedar Key and Environmental Factors Cedar Key, in the Big Bend region of Flor ida is one of the main areas of clam aquaculture on the west coast of Florida. The Ce dar Key Estuary is open to the Gulf of Mexico but water quality over the clam beds can be sign ificantly influenced by freshwater inputs from the Suwannee River system (Colson & Sturmer 2000). Water quality monitoring stations were deployed on several clam leases and data on te mperature, salinity a nd dissolved oxygen were collected every 30 minutes. Reported water qual ity values and additiona l archived data are available from the Florida Department of Ag riculture and Consumer Services (FDACS 2007), Division of Aquaculture, http: //sondes.floridaaquacu lture.com/sondes/archiveintro.htm. Gulf Jackson, one of the most productive clam leases on the west coast, frequently reaches a low of 15 parts per thousand (ppt), and reach es a low of 2 to 12 ppt at leas t once every year (Figure 1-2, A) (FDACS 2007). In addition to a nnual fluctuations in salinity hard clams in Cedar Key are exposed to regular tidal fluctua tions of 5 ppt, and can experience extreme fluctuations of 24 ppt over 24 hours (Baker et al. 2005). Summe r water temperatures range from 26oC to 32oC, with extremes of 34oC to 35oC in June and July (Figure 1-2, E). Temperatures of 32oC can continue into October (FDACS 2007). Dissolved oxygen le vels are extremely va riable on the Gulf

PAGE 13

13 Jackson clam lease in Cedar Key (Figure 1-2, C). Dissolved oxygen c oncentrations can fall below 5 milligrams per liter (mgL-1), every year, April through Oc tober. In 2002, short duration anoxic (<1 mgL-1) events occurred in both April and June (FDACS 2007). Description of Charlotte Harbor and Environmental Factors Charlotte Harbor is located on the southwest co ast of Florida, and is a more recent area than Cedar Key for Mercenaria mercenaria aquaculture. The Charlotte Harbor Estuary is separated from the Gulf of Mexico by barrier islands, causing reduced mixing, increasing residence time within the estuary and influencing water quality (McPherson et al. 1996). Little water quality data are available for Charlotte Harbor. We know however that salinity in Charlotte Harbor fluctuates as a result of fr eshwater runoff from the Caloosahatchee, Myakka, and Peace Rivers. Incomplete data sets fr om 2002 and 2003, which do not include the rainy season, show that in May of 2002 salinity remain ed above 35 ppt (Figure 1-2, B), while the lowest salinity (17 ppt) was recorded in Ju ly of 2003 (FDACS 2007). Charlotte Harbor temperatures range from 26oC to 32oC in May through October. In July of 2002 (Figure 1-2, F) and June of 2003, water temperatures stayed between 30oC and 32oC for three weeks (FDACS 2007). Charlotte Harbor shows similar variability in dissolved oxygen levels as Cedar Key, with several hypoxic events occurr ing May through August. In July of 2002 (Figure 1-2, D), dissolved oxygen concentrati ons remained below 5 mgL-1 for seventeen days, and frequently approached 0 mgL-1 for short periods of time. Anatomy and Behavior of Mercenaria mercenaria Mercenaria mercenaria are important members of the benthic community. They burrow into the sediment which protects them from predation, stabilizes their movement and facilitates feeding (Doering 1982). They are suspension feeder s and use specialized ci lia on their gills to pump water through their siphons and into the mantle cavity which f acilitates feeding, respiration

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14 and waste removal (Hamwi 1969, Roegner & Mann 1991). The rate of water movement through the mantle cavity can be measured directly or in directly. Rate of water movement is measured directly by measuring actual pumping rate, the volum e of water pumped in a given time. Rate of water movement may also be measured indirect ly by measuring clearance rate, the amount of particles removed from the wate r column in a given time (Grizzle 2001). Changes in activity, such as a decrease in pumping or burial, may be useful indicators of adverse environmental conditions. For a more detailed review of M. mercenaria anatomy see Eble (2001). Physiology, Distributio n and Survival of Mercenaria mercenaria The physiology, distribution and survival of Mercenaria mercenaria in the field can be influenced by many factors including water qua lity, food availability, physical disturbances, biological disturbances, polluti on and planting parameters. We know that these factors can affect survival, but it is difficult to understand to what extent their individual and combined effects are responsible for field mortalitie s (Kraeuter & Castagna 1989). Reduction in physiological and behavioral activities, such as burial, food consumption and oxygen uptake, has been noted in several studies in response to suboptimal ranges of temperature, salinity and dissolved oxygen (Chanley 1957, Hamwi 1969, Cast agna & Chanley 1973, Van Winkle 1976). Roegner and Mann (1991), Eversole (1987), and Grizzle (2001) have reviewed the biology, reproduction and physiology of M. mercenaria M. mercenaria can tolerate a wide range of temper atures, as indicated by its native range extending from the Gulf of St. Lawrence in Cana da to the Indian River Lagoon, Florida (Abbott 1974). M. mercenaria are also present along the Gulf Co ast to Texas (Abbott 1974). There was a significant population increase along the west coas t of Florida in the 1990s after it became an important aquaculture species (Arnold et al. 2004). Grow th of juvenile and adult M. mercenaria is greatly influenced by temperature, with maximum growth occurring at 20oC and shell growth

PAGE 15

15 ceasing at temperatures above 31oC (Ansell 1968, Rice & Pechenik 1992). In the southeastern United States, slow growth bands occur in th e summer and fall indicating sub optimal growth, likely due to high temperatures, while fast grow th bands occur during wi nter and spring when water temperatures are cooler (Jones et al. 1990, Arnold et al. 1991). Maximum pumping rates for food and oxygen consumption occur between 20 to 25oC (Hamwi 1969). Temperatures of 6oC and 32oC represent the low and high limits at wh ich pumping rates are no longer detected; although some clams may remain open (Hamwi 1969). M .mercenaria may be able to handle rapid changes in water temperatures within its tolerance limits, as demonstrated by a return to pumping within a few hours following a shift from cold water at 5oC to 24oC (Hamwi 1969). M. mercenaria is living at its thermal tole rance limit in Florida, as i ndicated by poor growth during summer months and decreased pumping rates at temperatures near 32oC. This indicates that M. mercenaria could be negatively affected by summers with higher than average temperatures. M. mercenaria is an estuarine species and is typi cally found in regions with salinities ranging from 20 to 30 ppt (Grizzle et al. 2001). Castagna and Chanley (1973) report the lower salinity limit for survival to be 12.5 ppt for adult M. mercenaria with an upper range of 35 ppt, with limited survival possible up to 46 ppt. We lls (1957) noted a correlation between areas of low salinity, near tributaries and river inlets, and an absence or lowered density of M. mercenaria suggesting that salinity st ructures the population distri bution within an estuary. Salinities between 23 to 27 ppt are optimal for maximum food and oxygen consumption in M. mercenaria Pumping rates are inhibited below 15 ppt and above 36 ppt (Hamwi 1969) and Van Winkle (1976) noted decreased activity at salini ties below 14 to 21 ppt. Castagna and Chanley (1973) found that burial activity for some bivalves was reduced or completely inhibited by salinities below 15 ppt. In addition, some bivalves exhibited valve gaping be havior and a lack of

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16 response to repeated tactile stimuli, appearing dead, but eventually clos ing when removed from the water. When exposed to low salinities (<12.5 ppt), M. mercenaria closes its shell, creating a water tight seal that protects the body tissues from unfavorab le conditions (Chanley 1957). Survival of M. mercenaria at lower or higher sa linities can be affected by several factors including individual size, water te mperature, salinity fluctuations genetic history and the source of freshwater (Chanley 1957). M. mercenaria are also affected by dissolved oxygen levels. At dissolved oxygen levels of 5 mgL-1 or more, M. mercenaria are able to maintain oxygen uptake rates by increasing the efficiency with which they remove oxygen from the water column (Hamwi 1969). However, below 5 mgL-1 oxygen uptake is reduced and anaerobi c and aerobic respiration may occur simultaneously (Hammen 1980). Under extreme e nvironmental conditions, below their activity threshold, M. mercenaria will close their valves and resort to anaerobic respiration (Hamwi 1969), they are able to sustain complete va lve closure for up to 18 days at 1 to 6oC (Loosanoff 1939). Dissolved oxygen levels less than 5 mgL-1 (hypoxia) are not thought to be detrimental on their own, but can lead to reduced survival when coupled with higher temper atures (Baker et al. 2002). Reproduction in Mercenaria mercenaria As juveniles, hard clams have both ma le and female gonads present, although spermatogenesis dominates this life stage. Followi ng the juvenile stage, hard clams develop into adults with separate sexes, although males appear to retain the ability to ch ange into females at a later time (Loosanoff 1936). Re production or spawning events in M. mercenaria are primarily influenced by temperature, as demonstrated by th e latitudinal variability in gametogenic cycles (Hesselman et al. 1989). Spawning typically oc curs in water temperatures ranging from 20 to 25oC throughout the geographical range (Hesselm an et al. 1989). In southern populations,

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17 spawning begins earlier in the year with bim odal or polymodal peaks, two or more spawning events, due to temperatures reaching the critic al range sooner, and for longer periods of time (Heffernan et al. 1989, Hesselman et al. 1989). In Florida and Georgia, the spring spawn is typically the largest (Heffernan et al. 1989, Hesselman et al. 1989). M. mercenaria can reach sexual maturity in as little as one year in southern populations, at a shell length of 20 to 35 mm. (Eversole 1980, Hesselman et al. 1989, and Walker & Heffernan 1994). In clams, reproduction is an important aspe ct of the overall energy budget. Typically, nonrespired energy is partitioned into shell growth, somatic growth, and repro duction (Grizzle et al. 2001). Ansell et al. (1964) found that roughly 52 % of annual organic production was released as gametes and Eversole (2001) indicated that annu al reproductive effort based on several studies represents 26 to 46% of annual growth for both male and female clams. Eversole (2001) has reviewed reproduction in M. mercenaria Induction of Triploidy in Mercenaria mercenaria Mercenaria mercenaria are diploid in naturally occurri ng populations, meaning they have two sets of chromosomes per cell. During reprod uction one set from the maternal gamete (egg) and one set from the paternal gamete (sperm) combine to create another diploid organism. Triploids are organisms with three sets of ch romosomes per cell. In free-spawning bivalve mollusks, the egg is released just prior to the first meiotic division, which allows researchers to induce triploids by suppressing either meiosis I or II. Suppression of a meiotic division results in a diploid egg, which is then fertilized by a haploid sperm, forming a triploid organism (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991). Tr iploidy can be induced using a variety of methods, including pressure, thermal, or chemical shock, or by mating tetraploid organisms with diploid organisms. In this study cytochalasin B (CB) was used as a chemical shock to suppress meiosis II. CB, one

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18 of a class of fungal metabolites, is thought to inhibit micro-filame nt formation in cells (Copeland 1974) and is commonly used to i nduce triploidy in bivalves (B eaumont & Fairbrother 1991). Several studies have shown an increase in gr owth of triploid bivalves as compared to diploids, especially following diploid spawning events (Guo & Allen 1994, Eversole et al. 1996, Hand et al. 1999, Brake et al. 2004). These di fferences have been attributed to several hypotheses including increased heterozygosity, pol yploidy gigantism, and energy reallocation. Increased heterozygosity suggests th at greater genetic diversity shoul d manifest in higher fitness and therefore higher growth of triploid organisms due to an extra allele at each loci (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991, Garnier-Gere et al. 2002). The hypothesis for polypl oidy gigantism states that increased growth in triploids is a result of in creased cell size due to an additional chromosome without a reduction in cell number pe r organ that is typically seen in higher organisms including fish (Guo & Allen 1994, Nell 2002). A third hypothesis says that triploids are sterile and as a result put little or no energy to wards reproduction, instead dive rting this energy to somatic growth (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991, Eversole et al. 1996). Triploids are supposed to be sterile as a result of the two ho mologous chromosomes from the female being unable to synapse at meiosis (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991). Triploidy has been induced in M. mercenaria in two previous studi es with contrasting results. Hidu et al. (1988) found no difference in size between di ploids and trip loids over three growing seasons in Maine. In contrast, Eversole et al. (1996) found that tr iploid hard clams were significantly larger than diploids in South Carolina waters, bu t only after 47 months and two spawning events. The triploids in their study did not respond to spawni ng stimuli and showed reduced and abnormal production of gametes upon hi stological examination (Eversole et al. 1996). The results of these two studies may ha ve differed because the diploid clams in the

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19 Eversole study had experienced two spawning se asons, while the diploid clams in the Maine study had not yet spawned. These two observati ons lend support to th e energy reallocation hypothesis, which states that ster ile triploids will di vert energy from reproductive growth into somatic growth. Methods of Investigation This study is a subset of a larg er study to examine the potential for improvement of Florida Mercenaria mercenaria aquaculture using triploid induction. Clam farmers have reported lower than average survival (~53% on average down from 67% in 1999) during the summer months (USDA 2004), with a complete loss of newly plan ted seed for Cedar Key farmers in 2002 (Baker et al. 2005). The objective of th is portion of the study was to de termine, in a laboratory setting, if triploid hard clams have a bett er survival rate than diploids when subjected to environmentally stressful conditions. Conditions for this expe riment were based on results from previous experiments and observed water quality paramete rs in both Cedar Key and Charlotte Harbor. M. mercenaria were challenged with salinities of 10 ppt 25 ppt and 40 ppt, to reflect both low and high extremes found in both locations. Dissolv ed oxygen was maintained at normoxic (>5 mgL1) and hypoxic (<5 mgL-1) levels. Since temperature appare ntly exacerbates the effects of salinity and dissolved oxygen, e xperiments were conducted at 32oC, which represents a stressful temperature but one that is fre quently observed in both estuaries. These experimental factors were chosen to cause physiologi cal stress in order to determine possible causes of mortalities in the field and to test the hypothesi s that triploids differ from diploi ds in their tolerance of extreme environmental conditions.

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20 Figure 1-1. Map of shellfish harvest areas for clams, mussels and oysters. Clam farming is centered on the west coast in areas 25 to 37, surrounding Cedar Key, and 56, 58 and 62 near Charlotte Harbor. Clam harvesti ng of natural populations occurs along areas of the west coast and the entire east coast (FDACS 2007).

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21 Figure 1-2. Extreme water quality values recorded at the Gulf Jackson clam lease in Cedar Key, FL and the Sandfly Key clam lease in Ch arlotte Harbor, FL: A, April 2003 B, May 2002 C, June 2002 D, July 2002 E, July 2003 F, July 2002 (FDACS 2007).

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22 CHAPTER 2 MATERIALS AND METHODS Production and Grow-out Histo ry of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mecenaria Triploid and diploid Mercenaria mercenaria were produced by Dr. J ohn Scarpa of Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institution (HBOI) during the spring of 2004. Triploidy was induced using cytochalasin B, a chemical that prevents the formation of polar bodies and, thus, retention of a set of chromosomes. Cytochalasin B was applied to fertilized M. mercenaria eggs during meiosis I (MI) and meiosis II (MII) development phases. Spawn from a single set of parents were separated into three groups to which the follo wing treatments were app lied: 1) triploidy was induced during meiosis I, 2) triploidy was induc ed during meiosis II, or 3) no treatment was applied, leaving the clams diploid. For a more detailed description of triploid production, see methods by Allen and Bushek (1992). This proc ess was repeated to create four separate families, each with diploid, triploid MI, and triploid MII sibling groups. M. mercenaria were raised in the HBOI laboratory to a size typically used in the fiel d by clam farmers and planted in summer of 2004 on two clam leases in Charlotte Harbor, Florida and on one clam lease in Cedar Key. Field studies were disr upted during the 2004 hurricane season with the loss of all M. mercenaria planted on clam leases in Charlotte Harbor. As a result, all remaining M. mercenaria comprising two families were relocated fr om Cedar Key, FL to Charlotte Harbor, FL in the fall of 2004. M. mercenaria from two families were sampled from Charlotte Harbor during November 2005 and 125 clams from each gr oup were sent to HBOI for analysis of condition index, histology, and ploidy. Group C (diploid control) and group D (triploid MII) from the November sampling event were reserved for use in laboratory challenges and represented a singl e family. Group D had a total of 278 clams and prior ploidy analyses indi cated that this group wa s 80% triploid, while

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23 other family groups were estimated to be 20 to 30% triploid. Group D was transported to the University of Florida laboratory facilities and individually sampled to determine ploidy state, ensuring 100% triploidy for experimental use. Meanwhile, group C remained at HBOI in a flowthrough system. Tissue Sampling and Ploidy Determination of Triploid Mercenaria mercenaria Mercenaria mercenaria from group D were placed in a 38 liter aquarium with the ventral margin facing up, on a grid platform of a styren e lighting panel. When an individual clam opened, a plastic coffee stirrer was inserted between the valve edges to k eep the clam slightly open. The clam was then removed from the water and a BD Tuberculin Syringe with a 26 gauge needle was inserted into the anterior adducto r muscle and a minute amount of hemolymph was withdrawn. Hemolymph was ejected into a 1.5 mL plastic microcentrifuge tube and 0.5 mL of DAPI/detergent/DMSO solution was added (Allen & Bushek 1992). Samples were placed on dry ice, if available, or on regular ice and then moved to an ultra cold freezer (-72oF) within 8 hr or 30 min, respectively. M. mercenaria were individually numbered to correspond to hemolymph sample number and returned to a holding tank. Hemolymph samples were packed with dry ice pellets and shipped priority overnight to Dr. John Scarpa at HBOI. At HBOI, hemolymph samples were assessed for ploidy using flow cytometry (Allen & Bushek 1992). Following ploidy sampling, group D was returned to HBOI and maintained in a flow-through system with group C until the laboratory challeng e. Temperatures in the flow-through system fluctuated around 21oC and salinities around 25 ppt. Phyt oplankton was added to the flow through system to ensure excess food was available for suspension feeding by M. mercenaria Of the 278 M. mercenaria in group D, 215 were found to be tr iploid. Only those individuals known to be triploids were subs equently included in group D and used in laboratory challenges.

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24 Experimental Aquarium System Design There were a total of twenty four experimental systems, each system was independent and consisted of up to three individua l tanks with a single sump. M easurements for aquaria system are reported in English units to facilitate future use of the design and purchase of standard parts. Individual Tanks Large Kritter Keepers (model # 20025, Lee, San Marcos, CA) were used for individual tanks; they were rectangular (14.5 long by 8.75 wide by 9.25 hi gh) and capable of holding up to 19 liters of water. A 1 hole was drilled on one of the narrow sides of the tank, the center being 1 from the top, and equidistant from th e sides. This hole was fitted with a tee eliminator and mnpt, male national pipe th read, by barb fitting, reduc ing tank capacity to 17 liters. To prevent leaking, a r ubber washer of 1 inner diameter 2 outer diameter was glued with silicon around the tee eliminat or on the inside of the tank. This served as a passive drain with return tubing, keeping wa ter levels from overflowing tank si des. Return tubing entered a slanted drainage manifold with three upturned 1 pvc tees, one slip el bow and one slip by fnpt female national pipe thread, elbow connected to a barb with 1 tubing which returned water to the main sump. In order to create a sand bed for the clams to bury in, platforms (Figure 2-1) were constructed using Plaskolite white egg-crate style, styrene plas tic lighting panels. Platforms were cut to fit inside the tanks and were raised off the bottom and supported by 1 sections of pvc connected to the platform by cable ties. Nylon mesh of 125 m was used to keep the sand above the platform and was secured using tubing split lengthwise on long sides. Silicone glue was used along all sides to secure platform s to tanks and to ensure water up-welled through the sand bed, rather than around. Tubing (1/4) which was used deliver water below the sand bed, was inserted through the mesh and held in place with rubber washers (which also kept sand

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25 above the platform). The tubing extended be low the platform and formed a circular loop containing three equally spaced tees which caused the water to circulate underneath the platform, removing potential anoxic spots, a nd creating even up-welling through the sand. Premium grade play sand was used for the sediment substrate. Prior to use, it was rinsed at least four times with tap water until the water ran clear, followed by a rinse with reverse-osmosis water. Sump Tanks Glass aquaria (38 liters) were used as su mp tanks. The sump housed equipment and allowed for water changes with minimal effect on individual tanks. Te mperature was controlled within the sump using a 200 watt Rena Cal Top Light submersible heater (Aquarium Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Chalfont, PA). A Rid -Volt titanium grounding probe (Taam, Inc., CA) prevented electrical currents from developing in the system. Water was pumped from the sump to the individual tank by a Quiet One Pump (m odel number 1200, Pentair Aquatics, El Monte, CA) with a mntp port from the pump connected to a fntp to barb. Tubing () connected to a second barb with a mntp c onnector attached to a check valve to prevent back flow from the tank to the sump in case of power loss. The check valve connected to a pvc manifold containing tee fittings for ball valves. The ball valve had a mntp x barb connected to the tubing fo r the individual tanks. Water re turn to the sump is described in the individual tank section. To minimize fluctuations in temperature due to external room conditions, outsides (sides and bottom) of the individual tanks and sumps were fitted with insulation, including a removable lid. The lids aided in preventing ev aporation and contamination of water in the tanks. All external pvc pipes we re insulated using thick pi pe insulation (Figure 2-2).

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26 Air stones delivering air or ni trogen, depending on the treatment were placed in both the tank and the sump. Dissolved oxygen levels were recorded in mgL-1 and percent saturation as indicated by an YSI (Yellow Sp rings Instrument, Ohio) 600 QS sonde and 650 MDS data logger. Seawater Storage Seawater (approximately 35 ppt) was obtained from University of Florida Whitney Marine Laboratory, located at Marineland, Florida on the East coast of the stat e, using a portable 550 gallon container. Seawater was kept in a 3000 gallon holding tank adjacent to the laboratory at Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences in Gainesville until needed for experimental use. Water was pumped to the lab and through a filtra tion series which included cartridge filters, media filters and U/V sterilizer, and into si x 105 gallon (397.5 liters) storage tanks. The cartridge filtration included a 100 m pre-filter and three 20 m filters that combined to create 75 ft2 (6.97 m2) of surface area. Cartridge filtration was followed by 2 medi a filters containing 2072 in3 (0.03 m3) of carbon media. The U/V sterilizer had a 40 W bulb and processed water at 25 gpm @ 15,000 Ws/cm2. Water of 0 ppt was produced by reverse osmo sis (R/O) using a Kent Marine R/O 200 HiF (Franklin, WI) system and stored in a 180 gallon storage tank. Water in the storage tanks was maintained at the salinities and temperatur es (Finnex HC-0800 and TH-500 Titanium Heater) used in the experiment, allowing fast and accurate water changes. Experimental Design of Tolerance Challenge This experiment was designed as a two by three factorial, with temperature held constant in all treatments at 32oC. Salinity was maintained at 10 ppt, 25 ppt, and 40 ppt and oxygen was maintained at normoxic levels above 5 mgL-1 (72 to 85% saturation, depending on salinity) or at hypoxic levels of less than 2 mgL-1 (28 to 34% saturation). At 32oC the expected dissolved

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27 oxygen levels for 100% saturation for 10 ppt, 25 ppt and 40 ppt are 6.92 mgL-1, 6.38 mgL-1, and 5.88 mgL-1 respectively. These values were chosen to reflect summer conditions in SW Florida estuaries. Treatments were blocked to minimize pot ential room effect on temperature, for a total of four blocks, with one treatment replic ate randomly assigned within each block. M. mercenaria were randomly assigned, with 9 triploid clams, group D and 9 diploid clams, group C in each replicate. Acclimation of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mercenaria Mercenaria mercenaria were acclimated in th ree 30-gallon tanks to 32oC and 10 ppt, 25 ppt or 40 ppt. Temperature was raised by 2oC per day from a starting temperature of 21oC until the experimental temperature of 32oC was reached. Salinity was adjusted 3 ppt per day from a starting value of 25 ppt until experimental salini ties of 10 ppt and 40 ppt were reached. Lower salinities were adjusted by adding R/O water to acclimation tanks. Higher salinities were adjusted by slowly adding a stock solution of 1 00 ppt to acclimation tanks. The stock solution was made by adding Instant Ocean synthetic sea salt (Aquarium Systems, Ohio) to R/O water and stirring until thoroughly dissolved. Acclima tion schedules were staggered so that each acclimation tank reached experimental values simultaneously; tanks with starting conditions furthest from the intended experi mental values were begun first. Health Assessment of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mercenaria Observations of Mercenaria mercenaria mortality, siphon extension, and burial were conducted at 12 hour intervals. For each tank, a rough count of siphon extension was made to assess the presence/absence of filtering activity (Figure 2-3). M. mercenaria were considered buried when they were completely or partially bu ried into the substrate in a natural position, i.e. posterior margin of the shell extending upwards from the sediment (Figure 2-4). Gaping behavior, if any, was noted. Gaping M. mercenaria had their shells open, mantle covering or

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28 partially covering the opening, and no si phon extension behavior (Figure 2-5). M. mercenaria on the sediment surface were assessed for mort ality, counted and temporarily removed to a holding basket. M. mercenaria within the sediment were uncove red, placed in a holding basket, assessed for mortality, and count ed. Sediment was thoroughly mixed and evenly distributed within the tank. Mortality was assessed in two ways: failure to respond when touched by a blunt probe along the mantle edge, or inability to rema in closed when manually compressed. Dead individuals were not returned to the system. The observation time was recorded and the shell length, height, and width of dead individuals we re measured to the nearest 0.1 mm using digital calipers. All non-gaping M. mercenaria were considered alive and we re returned to the sediment surface of the tank. Tanks were monitored for 21 da ys or until all individuals within a treatment had died. Water Quality Parameters in Aquarium Systems Temperature, salinity and dissolved oxygen le vels were monitored at 12 hour intervals with an YSI (Yellow Springs Instrument, Ohio) 600 QS sonde and 650 MDS data logger. Prior to each sampling event, the YSI was calibrated to 100% oxygen saturation following standard protocol. Salinity was calibrated usin g a typical marine standard of 55.91 S/cm held at 32C. Salinity measurements were randomly verified using a refractometer. In addition to measurements taken every 12 hours, temperature was monitored continuously with Fisherbrand digital thermometers (model number 15-077-8D, Pitts burgh, PA). Digital thermometers stored the minimum and maximum temper ature, providing a rough estimat e of the daily temperature variation in each tank. Salinity was adjusted with R/O or hypersaline water, as needed. Ammonia and nitrite were checked daily with ion specific colorimeters (model # HI93700 and

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29 #HI93707, Hanna, Woonsocket, RI). A 2 ml samp le of tank water was placed into a Hanna cuvet and diluted to 8 ml with di stilled water. The cuvet was gen tly swirled until the sample was completely mixed, wiped clean, and a zero reading was taken. Ammonia or nitrite reagents were added to the cuvet, following the manufacturers instructions for seawater analysis, and values were recorded. Readings were multiplied by five to correct for initial dilution. Data Analysis Water quality data were summarized by calculating the means for each individual tank, and the means for the treatment (n=4 tanks). Buri al data was calculated as the number of Mercenaria mercenaria that buried or attempted to bury durin g a 12 hour period over the total number of M. mercenaria present in the tank during that time period. Burial da ta was analyzed using a linear regression in SAS 9.1. To compare survival of triploid and diploid M. mercenaria survival analysis was performed, using the Lifereg pr ocedure available on SAS Versi on 9.1. Survival analysis is designed to evaluate the occurr ence of events over time. In this study, survival was assessed every twelve hours for twenty one days. M. mercenaria alive at the end of the experiment are considered right censored data, in that they did not experience an event during the given timeframe, which is taken into account in survival analysis (Allison 1995). Survival data is binomially distributed; each indivi dual is either alive (0) or d ead (1) at each given time. Therefore, a logit regression is performed using the maximu m likelihood method to fit a regression line (Sokal & Rohlf 1995). Survival ra tes were calculated from the slope of the regression line ( ), using the equation 100(e 1). Further details on survival analysis using SAS are provided in Allison (1995).

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30 Figure 2-1. Experimental tanks. A, View of sand platform from below showing tees used for circulating water beneath sand bed. B, Platform glued to si des of tank. C, Side view of the tank, showing the platform supporting a sand bed and clams. Figure 2-2. Experimental system. A, Close up of one system, incl uding three replicate tanks and one sump. B, View of wet lab set-up during experiment. Figure 2-3. Examples of M. mercenaria siphon extension.

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31 Figure 2-4. M. mercenaria burial positions. A, Surface (not c ounted as buried). B, Partially buried. C, Completely buried. Figure 2-5. A, Example of gaping beha vior. B, Example of a dead clam.

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32 CHAPTER 3 RESULTS Water Quality Most water quality parameters remained near the target values thr oughout the experiment (Table 1-6, Appendix 1). The only parameter with significant excursions from the target value was dissolved oxygen in the hypoxia treatments (T able 3-1). Periodic spikes of dissolved oxygen above 5 mgL-1 in the hypoxic treatment were a result of a loss of nitrogen gas flow when a gas cylinder ran empty. Thes e periods of normoxia (> 5 mgL-1) did not last for long periods of time, as they were either anticip ated, or occurred at a mortality check. After a new cylinder of nitrogen was started, dissolved oxygen levels returned to below 2 mgL-1 within 30 minutes. Survival Analysis Survival analysis indicate d that salinity (df = 2, 2 = 3144.5, p < 0.0001) and dissolved oxygen (df = 1, 2 = 67.9, p < 0.0001) had si gnificant effects on Mercenaria mercenaria survival. Survival of diploid and triploid M. mercenaria differed significantly in two of the treatments, 25 ppt hypoxia and 10 ppt hypoxia. In the 25 ppt hypoxia treatment (Fig ure 3-1, C), diploid M. mercenaria began dying on day 14, with 55% surviving to the final day (day 21). Triploid M. mercenaria began dying on day 17, with 89% surviving to the final day (day 21). Triploids had a 16.4% higher survival rate th an did diploids between day 14 and day 21, the time period in which mortalities occurred (l og y = 4.028 0.179[diploid], df = 1, 2 = 5.82, p = 0.0159). In the 10 ppt hypoxia treatment, triploid and diploid M. mercenaria began dying on days 3 and 4, respectively (Figure 3-1, A), with 0% survival on day 7. Diploid M. mercenaria had a 7.6% higher survival rate than did tr iploids between day 3 and 7, the tim e period in which mortalities occurred (log y = 2.44 + 0.0736[diploid], df = 1, 2 = 4.28, p = 0.0387).

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33 Survival of diploid and triploid M. mercenaria did not differ for the remaining treatments: 10 ppt normoxia, 25 ppt normoxia, 40 ppt hypoxia a nd 40 ppt normoxia. In the 10 ppt normoxia treatment (Figure 3-1, B) diploid and triploid M. mercenaria began dying on day 3 and mortalities of both occurred at regular interval s until all the individuals in the treatment were dead, on day 7. No mortalitie s of diploid or triploid M. mercenaria occurred in the 25 ppt normoxia treatment (Figure 3-1, D) Both diploid and triploid M. mercenaria in the 40 ppt normoxia treatment (Figure 3-1, F) had 97% surv ival. In the 40 ppt hypoxia treatments (Figure 3-1, E), diploid M. mercenaria began dying on day 4, with 22% surviving to the final day (day 21), while triploid M. mercenaria began dying on day 8, with 31% surviving to the final day. Reburial Rates Reburial rates refer to the proportion of M. mercenaria in a tank re-burying in 12 hours following excavation from the sand. M. mercenaria in the 25 ppt normoxia treatment had an average reburial rate of 66.5% (Figure 3-2, B) Although average rebur ial rate ranged from 39.6% to 87.5%, there was no significant change in reburial rate over the course of the experiment (r2 = 0.0074). Some individuals, both bur ied and unburied, were open and siphoning at each 12 hour interval in the 25 ppt normoxia treatment for the duration of the experiment. Clams in the 25 ppt hypoxia treatment had an aver age reburial rate of 20.8% over the course of the experiment, with a range from 0% to 65.3% (F igure 3-2, A). Reburial rates declined over the course of the experiment (r2 = 0.5287, p < 0.0001). Some individuals in the 25 ppt hypoxia treatment were open and siphoning at each 12 hour interval for the duration of the experiment. No clams in the 10 ppt normoxia or 10 ppt hypoxia treatments buried during the experiment and no siphon activity was noted. Clam s began to gape prior to mortalities. Clams in the 40 ppt normoxia treatment had an average reburial rate of 55.3%, with a range of 29.5% to 86.9% (Figure 3-2, D). Reburial rate increased sl ightly over the course of the

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34 experiment (r2 = 0.1336, p < 0.0001). Some individuals were open and siphoning at each 12 hour interval in the 40 ppt normoxia treatment for the duration of the experiment. Clams in the 40 ppt hypoxia treatment had an average reburial ra te of 14.2%, with a range of 0% to 56.9% (Figure 3-2, C). Reburial ra tes declined over the cour se of the experiment (r2 = 0.4732, p < 0.0001). Some individuals in the 40 ppt hypoxia treatment were open and siphoning at each 12 hour interval for the duration of the experiment.

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35 Table 3-1. Water quality values averaged across treatments. Treatment Water Quality Value Average MinimumMaximum Standard Error 10 ppt, Normoxia Temperature (oC) 32.3 31.4 33.1 0.148 10 ppt, Normoxia Salinity (ppt) 10.8 10.2 11.3 0.087 10 ppt, Normoxia Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.33 5.36 6.96 0.109 10 ppt, Normoxia % Dissolved Oxygen 89.4 78.2 95.6 2.12 10 ppt, Normoxia Ammonia (ppm) 2.03 0.53 4.59 0.526 10 ppt, Normoxia Nitrite (ppm) 0.16 0.03 0.40 0.050 25 ppt, Normoxia Temperature (oC) 32.2 31.1 33.4 0.075 25 ppt, Normoxia Salinity (ppt) 25.3 23.5 26.9 0.105 25 ppt, Normoxia Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.04 5.55 6.52 0.036 25 ppt, Normoxia % Dissolved Oxygen 95.3 87.6 101.8 0.58 25 ppt, Normoxia Ammonia (ppm) 0.76 0.00 2.29 0.137 25 ppt, Normoxia Nitrite (ppm) 0.14 0.01 0.29 0.015 40 ppt, Normoxia Temperature (oC) 32.2 30.7 33.4 0.089 40 ppt, Normoxia Salinity (ppt) 40.3 37.6 42.4 0.171 40 ppt, Normoxia Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 5.56 5.03 6.05 0.033 40 ppt, Normoxia % Dissolved Oxygen 95.0 84.9 102.8 0.60 40 ppt, Normoxia Ammonia (ppm) 0.79 0.00 2.44 0.148 40 ppt, Normoxia Nitrite (ppm) 0.11 0.01 0.23 0.011 10 ppt, Hypoxia Temperature (oC) 32.1 31.1 33.1 0.168 10 ppt, Hypoxia Salinity (ppt) 10.4 10.0 10.8 0.073 10 ppt, Hypoxia Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 1.56 0.22 5.21 0.408 10 ppt, Hypoxia % Dissolved Oxygen 11.5 3.5 20.9 2.53 10 ppt, Hypoxia Ammonia (ppm) 2.19 0.34 4.36 0.568 10 ppt, Hypoxia Nitrite (ppm) 0.13 0.04 0.29 0.032 25 ppt, Hypoxia Temperature (oC) 32.2 30.6 33.5 0.089 25 ppt, Hypoxia Salinity (ppt) 25.5 24.5 26.9 0.080 25 ppt, Hypoxia Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 0.75 0.24 4.31 0.114 25 ppt, Hypoxia % Dissolved Oxygen 9.0 3.8 31.5 0.94 25 ppt, Hypoxia Ammonia (ppm) 0.79 0.00 2.38 0.153 25 ppt, Hypoxia Nitrite (ppm) 0.11 0.00 0.23 0.013 40 ppt, Hypoxia Temperature (oC) 32.2 30.4 33.3 0.087 40 ppt, Hypoxia Salinity (ppt) 40.3 37.6 42.2 0.160 40 ppt, Hypoxia Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 0.76 0.20 4.12 0.113 40 ppt, Hypoxia % Dissolved Oxygen 10.0 3.4 35.1 1.09 40 ppt, Hypoxia Ammonia (ppm) 0.96 0.00 2.48 0.152 40 ppt, Hypoxia Nitrite (ppm) 0.10 0.00 0.26 0.014

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36 Figure 3-1. Percent cumulative survival of diploid and triploid hard clams, M. mercenaria : A, 10 ppt hypoxia B, 10 ppt normoxia C, 25 ppt hypoxia D, 25 ppt normoxia E, 40 ppt hypoxia F, 40 ppt normoxia.

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37 Figure 3-2. Scatter plot of the proportion of diploid and triploid hard clams, M. mercenaria that buried within 12 hours following placement on the surface: A, 25 ppt hypoxia B, 25 ppt normoxia, C, 40 ppt hypoxia D, 40 ppt normoxia.

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38 CHAPTER 4 DISCUSSION This is the first study to look at survival differences between diploid and triploid Mercenaria mercenaria in a controlled laboratory setti ng. I found that triploids had no advantage over diploids under cond itions of extreme salinity stress, or salinity stress combined with hypoxia. Triploids did have a signifi cant advantage over diploids when hypoxia was combined with a non-stressful salinity of 25 ppt. However, the advantage seen in triploids did not occur until day 15. Diploid M. mercenaria had a higher survival rate than triploid clams in the 10 ppt hypoxia treatment. While the survival curves for diploids and triploids were statistically significant, they we re nearly identical to the surv ival curves for 10 ppt, normoxia treatment in which no difference was seen. There are several potential reasons a difference in survival between diploids and triploids was not more apparent. These include 1) inadeq uate sample size, 2) the hypothesis of energy reallocation in triploids does not occur, and 3) the hypothesis of energy reallocation was not realized in this study because diploid cl ams had not experienced a spawning event. First, my sample sizes were relatively small. During the 2004 hurricane season, a significant portion of experimental clams were lost, and remaining families had low percentages of triploidy. As a result, M. mercenaria used in this experiment we re from one family, and only a MII triploid group and sibli ng diploid group was available fo r experimental use. Ploidy analysis was performed and yielded only enough triploid M. mercenaria to have nine individuals per tank or a total of thirty-six triploids and thirty -six diploids exposed to a particular treatment. A higher sample size may help minimize individual variability, while more than one family and triploid type would have increase d the genetic diversity, resulting in a better estimation of what

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39 could happen on a population level. Despite the lack of a larger sample size, a difference was detected and it is uncertain if a larger sa mple size would have improved our results. Second, while triploid clams used in this study had greatly reduced gametogenic development when compared to diploids (S. Laramore, Harbor Branch Oceanogr. Inst., pers. comm.), it is unclear if or how additional energy is stored, and whether or not that energy can be readily accessed during stressor events. Several hypotheses have been proposed to account for the often faster growth and larger size of polyploid organisms. The energy reallocation hypothesis suggests that the growth advantage triploids have over diploids is due to the extra energy that should be available when gametes are not formed. This hypothesis has not been directly tested for the hard clam Mercenaria mercenaria However, Eversole et al. (1996) found that triploid hard clams exhibited reduced ga metogenesis and did not release gametes when exposed to spawning stimuli, which supports the energy reallocation hypothesis. In addition, they found that triploids were significantly larger than diploi ds, following two spawning events that occurred over 47 months (Evers ole et al. 1996). In Florida, M. mercenaria typically reaches market size following 10 to 18 months of growth in the field (Sturmer 2004) while in South Carolina M. mercenaria reaches market size after 24 months (Eldridge et.al. 1976) If a growth advantage is not seen unt il 47 months in triploid M. mercenaria triploidy may not benefit the aquaculture industry. This is in contrast to th e success seen in oyster re search, where triploid oysters are typically bigger th an their diploid cohorts at ti me of harvest (Nell 2002). Two other hypotheses have been proposed to explain increased trip loid growth; polyploidy gigantism and increased heterozygosity. Polyploi d gigantism suggests that cell volume increases to accommodate an additional chromosome, without a reduction in cell number typically seen in higher organisms (Guo & Allen 1994). This hypothesis has not been tested for M. mercenaria

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40 and would not necessarily translate into higher survival rates. Triploid Mulinia lateralis the dwarf surfclam, were significantly larger than di ploids after 30 days, prior to sexual maturation and continued to be larger after three m onths, following sexual maturation, but without undergoing a spawning event, sugges ting growth was not related to energy reallo cation. While the authors consider increased he terozygosity a possibility, they a ssert that the 72% increase in size of triploids over diploids cannot be adequately explained by that hypothesis and suggest instead that polyploidy gigantism is the pr imary cause of the increased growth of Mulinia lateralis (Guo & Allen 1994). Increas ed heterozygosity, or incr eased genetic diversity, sometimes referred to as hybrid vigor, may lead to increased fitness, including faster growth rates (Beaumont & Fairbrother 199 1). Hawkins et. al. found overall that meiosis I triploids had greater multi-locus enzyme heterozygosity and greater growth than either meiosis II triploids or diploids in both the European flat oyster, Ostrea edulis (1994) and the Pacific oyster, Crassostrea gigas (2000). This suggests that at least part of the higher growth seen in meiosis I triploids is a result of increased allelic va riation (Hawkins 2000). This phenomenon may not have played a role in this study, since the triploids were created by suppressing meiosis II division. In addition, it is uncer tain if increased hybrid vigo r would enhance survival during stressor events. No hypothesis has been proven fo r all triploids and, in fact, all three hypotheses may contribute to increased size of triploid mollusks (Guo & Allen 1994, Hawkins et. al. 2000). Third, while diploid clams used in this study apparently spawned in the fall prior to or shortly after collection from the fi eld, it is uncertain if diploi d clams used in this study had undergone a spring spawning event. Sexual maturity in hard clams is typically associated with reaching 20 to 35 mm in shell length (Knaub & Ever sole 1988). Diploid clams in this study had an average shell length of 44.5 mm and a mini mum and maximum of 28.9 mm and 56.4 mm,

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41 respectively. Spawning events can be influen ced by many factors, including gamete ripeness, food supply and water conditions, but is typically triggered by seasonal changes in temperature and can differ throughout the hard clams ge ographical range (Eversole 2001) and between brood stock strains (Knaub & Ev ersole 1988). Histology was pe rformed on sixteen diploid clams from group C at the time that they were collected in November 2006. Two of unknown sex were either spent or in stage 0 to 1, six were in stage five or just prior to spawning and eight were in active emission, stages 6 to 8 (S. Laramore, Harbor Branch Oceanogr. Inst., pers. comm.). There was a three month period betw een when the histology was performed and the start of the experiment, so the histological state of the clams just prior to the start of the experiment was unknown. Eversole et al. (1996) found that triploids do not have a significant growth advantage over diploids until after the diploids have undergone two spawning events. If that is the case, and the diploid clams used in my study had spawned on ce, at most, then there may be no basis for expecting greater triploid surviv al in my experiment. Consider ing the timing of spring spawning events, followed by summer stresso r events, it would be beneficial to try to induce spawning for both diploid and triploid groups immediately prior to running an experiment. In addition to examining differences between tr iploid and diploid clams, this is the first laboratory study to examine the effects of multip le stressors of salinity and dissolved oxygen on M. mercenaria survival when combined with the hi gh temperatures reached during Florida summers. At higher temperatures, mortalities do not occur unless there is at least on additional stressor present, such as low salinity or low dissolved oxygen levels. High and normal salinities and high temperature at normal dissolved oxygen le vels are probably not causing mortalities in the field.

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42 I also made observations of clam behavior that have important implications. For example, while high temperature and low dissolved oxygen treatments did not appear to affect valve movement, clams closed their valves in response to salinities of 10 ppt. Clams at this salinity did not appear to be siphoning, and no burial activity occurred, suggesting that they were undergoing anaerobic respiration. Clams remained closed betw een four and eight days and eventually died. As a result of valve closure, hypoxia would not ha ve had an effect until after clams began gaping prior to mortality, which typica lly occurred within 24 hours of first observed gaping behavior. The only study to look at complete and sustaine d valve closure, found that hard clams could remain closed for up to 18 days at temperatures of 1 to 6oC (Loosanoff 1939). At higher temperatures of 15 to 22oC, Chanley (1957) found that juvenile hard clams (10 to 21.5 mm SL) exposed to 10 ppt salinity could survive for 28 days with no mortalitie s, with 50% mortality occurring on day 41, while seed clams (1.8 to 3.6 mm SL) exhibited 100% mortality within 15 days. This study indicates that at high summe r temperatures, sustaine d low salinities can be lethal to adult hard clams within 4 days with a potential for complete crop losses within 8 days. This may be important for future management of freshwater inputs into these estuaries during summer months. There is limited information in the literature on the effects of higher salinities on juvenile and adult hard clams (Grizzle et al. 2001). Hamwi (1969) found the upper salinity limit for a detectable pumping rate of acclim ated clams to be 36 ppt at 25oC. In a larval study, Davis (1958) found that hard clam larvae did not devel op in salinities above 32.5 ppt. This study found that high salinity of 40 ppt, and normoxia had li ttle or no impact on adult clam survival, siphon extension or burial activity, it did not address the physiological aspects of pumping rates or oxygen uptake.

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43 Burial rates decreased over th e duration of the experiment in the 25 ppt hypoxia and 40 ppt hypoxia treatments, treatment in which high subse quent mortalities occurred, indicating a sublethal effect of hypoxia. This suggests that clams planted during poor conditions may take longer to bury in the sedi ment leaving them vulnerable to predation (Doering 1982). Results of my experiments do not adequately e xplain summer mortalities in the field. It may be that fluctuations in the environment, pa rticularly of salinity, may be more physiologically stressful than static conditions due to the amount of adjustme nt in physiological functions, particularly osmotic regulation. Compounding the factors that I examin ed, there may be an effect of phytoplankton availabil ity and feeding rates during stre ssor events. If pumping rates decrease outside of optimal physio logical ranges, hard clam feed ing rates will decrease as well (Hamwi 1969). In addition, Charlotte Harbor ty pically experiences se veral red tide events ( Karina brevia ) during the summer months, which may further increase the physiological stress of clams already experiencing hi gh temperatures, fluctuating sa linities and low dissolved oxygen events. Does triploidy have the potential to improve hard clam culture in the state of Florida? Results of this experiment suggest that trip loidy does not increase th e overall survival of M. mercenaria during extreme environmental conditions. However there was an advantage of triploidy in the 25 ppt hypoxia treatme nt, a scenario that is more li kely than others to occur on a regular basis in the field. Add itional avenues of research could help to clarify the benefit of triploidy. Other experiments within this study w ill address survival unde r aquaculture conditions in two field experiments, survival of seed cl ams during extreme environmental conditions in a laboratory challenge, and differences in scope for growth of diploid and triploid hard clams.

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44 These additional experiments may he lp clarify the potential of tr iploidy to improve hard clam culture on the West coast of Florida. There are other potential benefits to triploidy, aside from e nhanced growth and survival, including aquaculture of non-nati ve species and an increased gl ycogen content. Sterility, in addition to potentially enhancing growth, can ensure that non-native organisms are not reproducing. Non-native species can affect natural populations of bivalves in two ways; 1) through competition with other species for res ources and 2) through hybr idization with native congeneric species (Arnold 2004, Beaumont and Fair brother 1991). Sterility may also result in enhanced taste. Bivalves, including M. mercenaria store their energy as glycogen, which becomes depleted during the spawning season. Tr iploids divert little or no energy to spawning, potentially resulting in a sweeter tasting clam since glycogen supplies ar e not depleted. In a study by Allen and Downing (1991), consumers and oyster growers rated triploid oysters higher in taste, texture and overall preference over contro l diploids, which they a ttribute to an increase in glycogen storage in triploids along with l ack of gonadal material, which negatively affects texture and firmness.

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45 APPENDIX WATER QUALITY DATA Table A-1. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 10 ppt, hypoxia. Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Standard Error 1 Temperature (oC) 31.9 31.4 32.7 0.10 8 Temperature (oC) 32.0 30.7 32.9 0.17 18 Temperature (oC) 31.9 30.7 33.3 0.21 23 Temperature (oC) 32.8 31.6 33.7 0.19 1 Salinity (ppt) 10.5 10.1 10.9 0.06 8 Salinity (ppt) 10.5 10.0 11.0 0.07 18 Salinity (ppt) 10.4 9.8 10.9 0.10 23 Salinity (ppt) 10.3 10.0 10.5 0.06 1 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 1.7 0.2 5.2 0.40 8 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 1.6 0.4 4.8 0.28 18 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 2.0 0.2 5.8 0.53 23 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 1.0 0.1 5.1 0.42 1 % Dissolved Oxygen 16.6 3.7 29.8 4.16 8 % Dissolved Oxygen 17.2 5.4 28.7 2.46 18 % Dissolved Oxygen 6.1 2.7 11.4 1.37 23 % Dissolved Oxygen 6.1 2.0 13.5 2.14 1 Ammonia (ppm) 1.7 0.1 4.3 0.46 8 Ammonia (ppm) 2.4 0.1 4.1 0.49 18 Ammonia (ppm) 1.9 0.7 3.0 0.43 23 Ammonia (ppm) 2.8 0.5 6.1 0.89 1 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.1 0.2 0.02 8 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.0 0.4 0.04 18 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.1 0.3 0.03 23 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.1 0.4 0.04

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46 Table A-2. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 10 ppt, normoxia. Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Standard Error 3 Temperature (oC) 32.2 31.5 32.7 0.12 7 Temperature (oC) 32.3 31.5 32.9 0.11 17 Temperature (oC) 32.7 31.4 33.3 0.18 19 Temperature (oC) 32.2 31.2 33.6 0.18 3 Salinity (ppt) 10.9 10.3 11.6 0.10 7 Salinity (ppt) 10.4 9.6 10.9 0.08 17 Salinity (ppt) 11.0 10.5 11.6 0.10 19 Salinity (ppt) 10.7 10.3 11.2 0.07 3 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.4 5.1 7.0 0.13 7 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.4 5.2 7.4 0.13 17 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.2 5.8 6.6 0.06 19 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.3 5.3 6.8 0.11 3 % Dissolved Oxygen 89.5 74.3 98.7 3.22 7 % Dissolved Oxygen 88.7 74.3 93.7 2.24 17 % Dissolved Oxygen 90.2 86.6 93.5 0.93 19 % Dissolved Oxygen 89.2 77.5 96.3 2.10 3 Ammonia (ppm) 1.7 0.2 4.2 0.45 7 Ammonia (ppm) 2.1 0.8 4.8 0.48 17 Ammonia (ppm) 2.2 0.9 4.6 0.55 19 Ammonia (ppm) 2.2 0.3 4.9 0.63 3 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.03 7 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.1 0.3 0.03 17 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.0 0.7 0.10 19 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.1 0.4 0.04

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47 Table A-3. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 25 ppt, hypoxia. Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Standard Error 4 Temperature (oC) 31.9 29.9 33.0 0.09 11 Temperature (oC) 32.6 31.3 33.7 0.10 14 Temperature (oC) 32.2 31.1 33.7 0.06 24 Temperature (oC) 32.0 30.0 33.5 0.11 4 Salinity (ppt) 25.4 24.2 26.8 0.08 11 Salinity (ppt) 25.2 24.4 26.7 0.08 14 Salinity (ppt) 25.6 24.9 27.0 0.07 24 Salinity (ppt) 25.6 24.5 27.2 0.09 4 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 0.7 0.3 2.5 0.06 11 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 0.8 0.2 5.2 0.14 14 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 0.7 0.2 4.7 0.13 24 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 0.8 0.2 4.8 0.12 4 % Dissolved Oxygen 9.5 4.9 18.6 0.61 11 % Dissolved Oxygen 9.6 3.5 42.0 1.17 14 % Dissolved Oxygen 7.6 3.3 32.6 0.83 24 % Dissolved Oxygen 9.3 3.4 32.6 1.15 4 Ammonia (ppm) 0.7 0.0 2.4 0.15 11 Ammonia (ppm) 0.8 0.0 2.0 0.13 14 Ammonia (ppm) 1.0 0.0 2.3 0.17 24 Ammonia (ppm) 0.7 0.0 2.9 0.16 4 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01 11 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.2 0.01 14 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.2 0.01 24 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01

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48 Table A-4. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 25 ppt, normoxia. Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Standard Error 5 Temperature (oC) 32.3 30.7 33.9 0.10 9 Temperature (oC) 32.3 31.5 33.0 0.05 13 Temperature (oC) 32.4 31.2 34.2 0.10 20 Temperature (oC) 31.9 30.9 32.5 0.05 5 Salinity (ppt) 25.2 23.1 26.5 0.10 9 Salinity (ppt) 25.3 24.5 26.8 0.08 13 Salinity (ppt) 25.3 22.5 27.2 0.13 20 Salinity (ppt) 25.6 24.0 27.2 0.11 5 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.0 5.5 6.5 0.04 9 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.1 5.6 6.5 0.03 13 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.0 5.6 6.5 0.03 20 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 6.1 5.5 6.5 0.04 5 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.1 85.9 100.8 0.60 9 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.2 88.7 101.8 0.56 13 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.5 89.7 102.3 0.53 20 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.2 86.2 102.1 0.62 5 Ammonia (ppm) 0.6 0.0 2.1 0.12 9 Ammonia (ppm) 1.0 0.0 2.4 0.13 13 Ammonia (ppm) 0.8 0.0 2.9 0.15 20 Ammonia (ppm) 0.7 0.0 1.9 0.14 5 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.1 0.3 0.01 9 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01 13 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.4 0.02 20 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.02

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49 Table A-5. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 40 ppt, hypoxia. Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Standard Error 6 Temperature (oC) 32.0 29.8 33.3 0.09 10 Temperature (oC) 32.0 29.5 32.9 0.09 16 Temperature (oC) 32.7 31.3 33.7 0.09 22 Temperature (oC) 32.2 31.2 33.4 0.07 6 Salinity (ppt) 40.2 37.7 42.0 0.15 10 Salinity (ppt) 40.1 37.6 41.9 0.14 16 Salinity (ppt) 40.4 37.9 42.4 0.19 22 Salinity (ppt) 40.5 37.3 42.5 0.17 6 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 0.8 0.2 3.8 0.12 10 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 1.0 0.3 4.5 0.13 16 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 0.6 0.1 3.7 0.10 22 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 0.7 0.2 4.5 0.10 6 % Dissolved Oxygen 9.7 3.7 34.6 1.20 10 % Dissolved Oxygen 13.1 4.3 47.9 1.36 16 % Dissolved Oxygen 6.9 2.4 25.8 0.85 22 % Dissolved Oxygen 10.5 3.2 31.9 0.95 6 Ammonia (ppm) 0.9 0.0 2.4 0.16 10 Ammonia (ppm) 0.9 0.0 1.7 0.11 16 Ammonia (ppm) 1.2 0.0 3.4 0.19 22 Ammonia (ppm) 0.9 0.0 2.5 0.15 6 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01 10 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01 16 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.02 22 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01

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50 Table A-6. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 40 ppt, normoxia. Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Standard Error 2 Temperature (oC) 31.9 30.4 32.8 0.07 12 Temperature (oC) 32.0 30.5 32.6 0.08 15 Temperature (oC) 32.5 30.8 34.2 0.10 21 Temperature (oC) 32.5 31.3 34.0 0.10 2 Salinity (ppt) 40.1 37.5 41.6 0.14 12 Salinity (ppt) 40.6 38.1 42.6 0.15 15 Salinity (ppt) 40.3 38.3 42.2 0.14 21 Salinity (ppt) 40.2 36.4 43.3 0.25 2 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 5.6 5.1 6.1 0.03 12 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 5.6 5.0 5.9 0.03 15 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 5.6 5.1 6.1 0.03 21 Dissolved Oxygen (mgL-1) 5.5 4.9 6.1 0.04 2 % Dissolved Oxygen 94.3 87.4 103.8 0.60 12 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.3 79.8 102.0 0.64 15 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.6 88.7 102.8 0.52 21 % Dissolved Oxygen 94.8 83.7 102.7 0.63 2 Ammonia (ppm) 0.7 0.0 1.8 0.12 12 Ammonia (ppm) 0.8 0.0 2.2 0.13 15 Ammonia (ppm) 0.8 0.0 2.3 0.14 21 Ammonia (ppm) 0.9 0.0 3.5 0.19 2 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.1 0.3 0.01 12 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.2 0.01 15 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.2 0.01 21 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01

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51 LIST OF REFERENCES Abbott, R. T. 1974. American seashells. The marine mollusca of the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of North America. 2nd ed. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold Company. 663 pp. Allen, S. K. & D. Bushek. 1992. Large-sc ale production of triploid oysters, Crassostrea virginica (Gmelin), using "stripped" gametes. Aquaculture 103:241-251. Allen, S. K., & S. L. Downing. 1991. Consumers and experts alike prefer the taste of sterile triploid over gravid di ploid Pacific oysters ( Crassostrea gigas Thunberg, 1793). J. Shellfish Res. 10:19-22. Allison, P. D. 1995. Survival analysis using SAS a practical guide. Cary, North Carolina: SAS Institute, Inc. 292 pp. Ansell, A. D. 1968. The rate of growth of the hard clam Mercenaria mercenaria (L.) throughout the geographical range. J. Cons. Pe rm. Int. Explor. Mer. 31:364-409. Ansell, A. D., F. A. Loosmore & K. F. Lander. 1964. Studies on the hard-shell clam, Venus mercenaria in British waters. II. Seasonal cycle in condition and biochemical composition. J. Appl. Ecol. 1:83-95. Arnold, W. S., D. C. Marelli, T. M. Bert, D. S. Jones & I. R. Quitmyer. 1991. Habitat-specific growth of hard clams Mercenaria mercenaria (L.) from the Indian River, Florida. J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol. 147:245-265. Arnold, W. S., S. L. Walters, J. S. Fajans, S. C. Peters & T. M. Bert. 2004. Influence of congeneric aquaculture on hard clam ( Mercenaria spp ) population genetic structure. Aquacult. Int. 12:139-160. Arnold, W. S., M. W. White, H. A. Norri s & M. E. Berrigan. 2000. Hard clam ( Mercenaria spp.) aquaculture in Florida, USA: Geographic information system applications to lease site selection. Aquacult. Eng. 23:203-231. Baker, S. M., P. Baker, D. Heuberger & L. N. St urmer. 2005. Short-term effects of rapid salinity reduction on seed clams ( Mercenaria mercenaria ). J. Shellfish Res. 24:29-33. Baker, S. M., D. Heuberger, E. Phlips & L. St urmer. 2002. Water quality and its role on hard clam production. University of Florida, Inst itute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Gainesville, Florida. pp. 7. Beaumont, A. R. & J. E. Fairbrother. 1991. Pl oidy manipulation in molluscan shellfish: A review. J. Shellfish Res. 10:1-18. Brake, J., J. Davidson & J. Davi s. 2004. Field observations on growth, gametogenesis, and sex ratio of triploid and diploid Mytilus edulis Aquaculture 236:179-191.

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52 Castagna, M. & P. Chanley. 1973. Salinity tolerance of some marine bivalves from inshore and estuarine environments in Virginia waters on the Western Mid-Atlantic coast. Malacologia 12:47-96. Chanley, P. E. 1957. Survival of some juvenile bivalves in water of low salinity. Proc. Natl. Shellfish. Assoc. 48:52-65. Colson, S. & L. N. Sturmer. 2000. One shining moment known as clamelot: The Cedar Key story. J. Shellfish Res. 19:477-480. Copeland, M. 1974. The cellular res ponse to cytochalasin B: A cr itical overview. Cytologia 39:709-727. Davis, H. C. 1958. Survival and growth of clam and oyster larvae at diffe rent salinities. Biol. Bull. 114:296-307. Doering, P. H. 1982. Reduction of sea star preda tion by the burrowing response of the hard clam Mercenaria mercenaria (Mollusca:Bivalvia). Estuaries 5:310-315. Eble, A. F. 2001. Anatomy and histology of Mercenaria mercenaria In: J. N. Kraeuter & M. Castagna, editors. Biology of the Hard Clam Amsterdam: Elsevier Science. pp. 117-220. Eldridge, P.J., W. Waltz, R.C. Gracy, & H. H. Hunt. 1976. Growth and mortality rates of hatchery seed clams, Mercenaria mercenaria planted in protected trays in waters of South Carolina. Proc. Natl. Sh ellfish. Assoc. 66:13-22. Eversole, A. G. 2001. Reproduction in Mercenaria mercenaria In: J. N. Kraeuter & M. Castagna, editors. Biology of the Hard Clam Amsterdam: Elsevier Science. pp. 221-260. Eversole, A.G. 1987. Species profiles: life histor ies and environmental requirements of coastal fishes and invertebrates: hard clam. U.S. Fish Wildl. Serv. Biol. Rep. 82(11.75). U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, TR EL-82-4. 33 pp. Eversole, A. G., C. J. Kempton, N. H. Hadl ey & W. R. Buzzi. 1996. Comparison of growth, survival, and reproductive success of diploid and triploid Mercenaria mercenaria J. Shellfish Res. 15:689-694. Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) (Ed. ). (2004-2007). Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Se rvices, Division of Aquaculture [Online]. Available: http://www.floridaaquacu lture.com/index.htm [2007, March 1]. Garnier-Gere, P. A., Naciri-Graven Y, Bougrier S, Magoulas A, Heral M, Kotoulas G, Hawkins A & G. A. 2002. Influences of triploidy, parent age and genetic diversity on growth of the pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas reared in contrasting natu ral environments. Mol. Ecol. 11:1499-1514.

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53 Grizzle, R. E., V. M. Bricelj & S. E. Shumway. 2001. Physio logical ecology of Mercenaria mercenaria In: J. N. Kraeuter & M. Castagna editors. Biology of the Hard Clam. Amsterdam: Elsevier Science. pp. 305-382. Guo, X. & S. K. Allen. 1994. Sex determination a nd polyploid gigantism in the dwarf surfclam ( Mulinia lateralis Say). Genetics 138:1199-1206. Hammen, C. S. 1980. Total energy metabolism of marine bivalve mollusks in anaerobic and aerobic states. Comp. Biochem. Physiol. 67A:617-621. Hamwi, A. 1969. Oxygen consumption a nd pumping rate of the hard clam Mercenaria mercenaria L. Ph.D. dissertation, Rutgers Univer sity, New Brunswick, New Jersey. 177pp. Hawkins, A. J. S., A. Magoulas, M. Hral, S. Bougrier, Y. Naciri-Graven, A. J. Day, G. Kotoulas. 2000. Separate effects of trip loidy, parentage and genomic diversity upon feeding behaviour, metabolic efficiency a nd net energy balance in the Pacific oyster Crassostrea gigas Genet. Res., Camb. 76:273-284. Hawkins, A. J. S., A. J. Day, A. Grard, Y. Naciri, C. Ledu, B. L. Bayne & M. Hral. 1994. A genetic and metabolic basis for faster grow th among triploids induced by blocking meiosis I but not meiosis II in the larv iparous European flat oyster, Ostrea edulis L. J. Exp. Mar. Biol. Ecol. 184:21-40. Heffernan, P. B., R. L. Walker & J. L. Carr. 1989. Gametogenic cycles of three bivalves in Wassaw Sound, Georgia: I. Mercenaria mercenaria (Linnaeus, 1758). J. Shellfish Res. 8:51-60. Hesselman, D. M., B. J. Barber & N. J. Blake. 1989. The reproductive cycle of adult hard clams, Mercenaria spp. in the Indian River Lagoon, Fl orida. J. Shellfish Res. 8:43-49. Hidu, H., K. M. Mason, S. E. Shumway & S. K. Allen. 1988. Induced triploidy in Mercenaria mercenaria L.: Effects on performance in the juveniles. J. Shellfish Res. 7:202. Jones, D. S., I. R. Quitmyer, W. S. Arnold & D. C. Marelli. 1990. Annual shell banding, age, and growth rate of hard clams ( Mercenaria spp.) from Florida. J. Shellfish Res. 9:215-225. Knaub, R. S. & A. G. Eversole. 1988. Reproduction of different stocks of Mercenaria mercenaria J. Shellfish Res. 7:371-376. Kraeuter, J. N. & M. Castagna. 1989. Factors aff ecting the growth and survival of clam seed planted in the natural environment. In: J. J. Manzi & M. Castagna, editors. Clam Mariculture in Nort h America. New York: Elsevier. pp. 149-165. Loosanoff, V. 1939. Effect of temperature upon shell movements of clams, Venus mercenaria (L.). Biol. Bull. 76:171-182. Loosanoff, V. 1936. Sexual phases in the quohog. Science 83:287-288.

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54 McPherson, B. F., R. L. Miller & Y. E. St oker. 1996. Physical, chem ical, and biological characteristics of the Charlotte Harbor basin and estuarine system in Southwestern Florida A summary of the 1982-89 US Geological Surv ey Charlotte Harbor assessment and other studies. Denver, CO: Florida Department of Environmental Protection. pp. 32. Menzel, R. W. & H. W. Sims. 1962. E xperimental farming of hard clams, Mercenaria mercenaria in Florida. Proc. Natl. Shellfish. Assoc. 53:103-109. Nell, J. A. 2002. Farming triploid oysters. Aquaculture 210:69-88. Philippakos, E., C. Adams, A. Hodges, D. Mulkey, D. Comer & L. Sturmer. 2001. Economic impact of the Florida cultured hard clam industry. Florida Sea Grant Publication SGR 123, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL. 23 pp. Rice, M. A. & J. A. Pechenik. 1992. A review of the factors influencing the growth of the northern quahog, Mercenaria mercenaria (Linnaeus, 1758). J. Shellfish Res. 11:279-287. Roegner, G. C. & R. Mann. 1991. Hard clam, Mercenaria mercenaria 5-1 5-17. In: S.L. Funderburk, J.A. Mihursky, S. J. Jordan & D. Riley, editors. Habitat requirements for Chesapeake Bay Living Resources. 2nd ed. Chesapeake Res. Consortium, Solomons, MD. pp. 5-1 5-7. Scarpa, J., L. N. Sturmer, S. Baker, S. Lara more & E. El-Wazzan. 2005. Potential use of induced triploidy in Florida hard clam a quaculture. J. Shellfish Res. 24:674. Sokal, R. R. & F. J. Rohlf 1995. Biometry. The pr inciples and practice of statistics in biological research. New York: W.H. Freeman and Company. pp. 896. Sturmer, L. 2004. What is clam farming? Introdu ction to culture components. University of Florida, Shellfish Aquaculture Extension Program, Cedar Key, FL. pp. 2. United States Department of Agriculture. 2006. Florida agriculture aqu aculture. Orlando, FL: Florida Agricultural Stat istics Service. 4 pp. United States Department of Agriculture. 2004. Florida agriculture aqu aculture. Orlando, FL: Florida Agricultural Stat istics Service. 4 pp. United States Department of Agriculture. 2002. Florida agriculture aqu aculture. Orlando, FL: Florida Agricultural Stat istics Service. 4 pp. Van Winkle, W., S. Y. Feng & H. H. Haski n. 1976. Effect of temperature and salinity on extension of siphons by Mercenaria mercenaria J. Fish. Res. Bd. Canada 33:1540-1546. Walker, R. L. & P. B. Heffernan. 1994. Temporal and spatial effects of tidal exposure on the gametogenic cycle of the northern quahog, Mercenaria mercenaria (Linnaeus, 1758), in coastal Georgia. J. Shellfish Res. 13:479-486.

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55 Wells, H. W. 1957. Abundance of the hard clam Mercenaria mercenaria in relation to environmental factors. Ecology 38:123-128.

PAGE 56

56 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Elise Ann Hoover was born in Janesville, Wisconsin, on March 7th 1977. She moved with her parents to Gainesville, Florid a, in 1981 and has been a resident since that time. Yearly trips to Crescent Beach on the east coast of Florida a nd an introduction to scuba diving cemented her love of the ocean and a desire to study in a rela ted field. She received her BS in environmental science from the University of Florida in May of 2000. Elise went on to teach laboratory sections for Invertebrate Zoology and Marine Bi ology with Dr. Frank Maturo at the University of Florida, followed by identification of invertebrates with an environmental consulting firm. She returned to the University of Florida to pursue a masters degree in the spring of 2004 and will receive her degree in the spring of 2007.


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Title: Effects of Temperature, Salinity, and Dissolved Oxygen on Survival of Triploid and Diploid Hard Clams, Mercenaria mercenaria
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Material Information

Title: Effects of Temperature, Salinity, and Dissolved Oxygen on Survival of Triploid and Diploid Hard Clams, Mercenaria mercenaria
Physical Description: Mixed Material
Copyright Date: 2008

Record Information

Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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EFFECTS OF TEMPERATURE, SALINITY AND DISSOLVED OXYGEN ON SURVIVAL
OF TRIPLOID AND DIPLOID HARD CLAMS, Mercenaria mercenaria
























By

ELISE ANN HOOVER


A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
MASTER OF SCIENCE

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

2007



































2007 Elise Ann Hoover
































To my family for all their patience, support, and understanding.









ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

I would like to thank my advisor, Dr. Shirley Baker, for giving me the opportunity to

conduct research under her guidance. I would also like to thank the other principal investigators

on this project, Dr. John Scarpa, Leslie Sturmer, and Dr. Chuck Adams, for their advice and

assistance in completing my research. In addition, I would like to thank Dr. Derk Bergquist for

all his advice on design and construction of the aquaria systems used in this experiment.

I would also like to thank my committee members, Dr. Michael Allen and Dr. Patrick

Baker, for their advice and support.

Funding for this project was provided by Florida Sea Grant and United States Department

of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service.

Many thanks are due for project assistance by members of Harbor Branch Oceanographic

Institute, Eman El-Wazzan, Susan Laramore, Angela Ledger, and Sandie Scarpa.

I would also like to thank the many undergraduate and graduate students of the University

of Florida, especially Carla Beals, Jenn Bematis, Ken Black, Megan Brennan, Chelsey

Campbell, Jasmine Carastro, Jon Fajans, Jenn Helseth, Rick Kline, Michael Krasilovsky, Emily

Mitchem, Shannon Osborn, Kelly Robinson, Emily Senesac, Darlene Saindon, Michelle Tishler,

and Kerry Weber.

Special thanks go to my husband Jeff Hoover and my parents Joan and Tom Rothrock for

all their assistance in the lab and their support.









TABLE OF CONTENTS

page

A CK N O W LED G M EN T S ................................................................. ........... ............. .....

LIST OF TABLES ......... ..... .... ....................................................7

LIST OF FIGURES ................................. .. ..... ..... ................. .8

A B S T R A C T ............ ................... .................. .......................... ................ .. 9

CHAPTER

1 INTRODUCTION ............... ................. ........... ................................. 11

Aquaculture of Mercenaria mercenaria in Florida.........................................................11
Description of Cedar Key and Environmental Factors........... ..... .................12
Description of Charlotte Harbor and Environmental Factors ............ ..............................13
Anatomy and Behavior of Mercenaria mercenaria ............................. ............... 13
Physiology, Distribution and Survival ofMercenaria mercenaria ........... ..............14
Reproduction in M ercenaria mercenaria ......................................................................... 16
Induction of Triploidy in Mercenaria mercenaria..... ...............................17
M methods of Investigation ....... ......... ............................... ..... ........... 19

2 M A TER IA L S A N D M ETH O D S ........................................ .............................................23

Production and Grow-out History of Triploid and Diploid Hard Mercenaria mecenaria .....23
Tissue Sampling and Ploidy Determination of Triploid Mercenaria mercenaria .................24
Experim ental Aquarium System D esign ........................................ .......................... 25
Individual Tanks ...................................................................... ........ 25
S u m p T a n k s ............................................................................................................... 2 6
Seaw after Storage ............................. ...................27
Experimental Design of Tolerance Challenge ....................................... .............. .................. 27
Acclimation of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mercenaria..................................28
Health Assessment of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mercenaria..........................28
Water Quality Parameters in Aquarium Systems.........................................................29
D ata A n aly sis ............................. .................................................................... ............... 3 0

3 R E SU L T S .............. ... ................................................................32

W ate r Q u a lity .................................................................................................................... 3 2
Survival A nalysis................................................... 32
R e b u ria l R ate s ................................................................................................................... 3 3

4 DISCU SSION ......... ...... .. ....... ......... ....................... ........ 38









APPENDIX: W ATER QUALITY DATA......................................................... ............... 45

L IST O F R E F E R E N C E S ............................................................................... ..........................5 1

B IO G R A PH IC A L SK E T C H .............................................................................. .....................56



















































6









LIST OF TABLES


Table page

3-1 W ater quality values averaged across treatments. .................................. .................35

A-1 Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 10 ppt, hypoxia. ..........................45

A-2 Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 10 ppt, normoxia.............................46

A-3 Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 25 ppt, hypoxia. ..........................47

A-4 Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 25 ppt, normoxia..........................48

A-5 Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 40 ppt, hypoxia ..........................49

A-6 Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 40 ppt, normoxia.............................50









LIST OF FIGURES


Figure page

1-1. Map of shellfish harvest areas for clams, mussels and oysters in Florida.......................20

1-2. Extreme water quality values recorded at the Gulf Jackson clam lease in Cedar Key,
FL and the Sandfly Key clam lease in Charlotte Harbor, FL. ........................................21

2-1. Experimental tanks............ ..... ................................30

2-2 E xperim mental sy stem ............................................................................... .....................30

2-3. Examples ofM mercenaria siphon extension....................................... ...................... 30

2-4. M m ercenaria burial positions. ....................... ......... ......... ................................31

2-5. Examples of gaping behavior and a dead clam.................... ....................... 31

3-1. Percent cumulative survival of diploid and triploid hard clams, M. mercenaria. ............36

3-2. Scatter plot of the proportion of diploid and triploid hard clams, M. mercenaria, that
buried within 12 hours following placement on the surface ................ ........ ..........37









Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science

EFFECTS OF TEMPERATURE, SALINITY AND DISSOLVED OXYGEN ON SURVIVAL
OF TRIPLOID AND DIPLOID HARD CLAMS, Mercenaria mercenaria

By

Elise Ann Hoover

May 2007

Chair: Shirley Baker
Major: Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences

High mortalities of cultured Mercenaria mercenaria, the northern hard clam, have

occurred along the west coast of Florida during the summer months and are thought to be caused

by low salinities, high temperatures, and low levels of dissolved oxygen. M. mercenaria also

lose a substantial amount of energy through a spring spawning event. It is evident that an

improvement in hard clam aquaculture is needed, and triploidy may be a potential solution.

Based on the energy reallocation hypothesis, triploids will divert energy from reproduction to

somatic growth resulting in a larger and potentially hardier clam. Triploids were produced using

cytochalasin B during meiosis II division and ploidy analysis confirmed triploid state. Triploids

and sibling diploids were exposed to salinities of 10, 25, and 40 ppt and dissolved oxygen levels

of < 2 mg-L-1 and > 5 mg-L-1 with temperature constant at 320C for 21 days. Observations of

clam mortality, siphon extension, and burial were conducted at 12 hour intervals to assess lethal

and sublethal treatment effects. Survival analysis was performed using the Lifereg procedure

available on SAS to test the difference in survival between triploids and diploids in each

treatment. Survival of diploid and triploid M mercenaria differed significantly in two of the

treatments: 25 ppt hypoxia (P=0.0159) and 10 ppt hypoxia (P=0.0387). Burial rates decreased

over the duration of the experiment in the 25 ppt hypoxia and 40 ppt hypoxia treatments,









indicating a sublethal effect of hypoxia. There was an advantage of triploidy in the 25 ppt

hypoxia treatment, a range seen in the field; however the overall results of this experiment

suggest that triploidy does not confer an advantage for survival ofM mercenaria.









CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION

In Florida, the hard clam, Mercenaria mercenaria is an important aquaculture species for

coastal residents in rural areas on the east and west coasts (Figure 1-1), including Cedar Key and

Charlotte Harbor (USDA 2004). In recent years, high clam mortalities have occurred along the

west coast of Florida during the summer months and are thought to be caused by low salinities,

high temperatures, and low levels of dissolved oxygen (Scarpa et al. 2005). Prior to summer

stressors, mature M. mercenaria are releasing a substantial amount of energy through an intense

spring spawning event (Hesselman et al. 1989, Eversole 2001). It is evident that an improvement

in hard clam stock is needed, and triploidy is a potential solution. Based on the energy

reallocation hypothesis, triploids should allocate little or no energy towards reproduction and

will instead allocate the energy to somatic growth resulting in a larger and potentially hardier

clam (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991). Since Florida already has fast growing clam populations,

I examined whether triploidy would relate to a hardier clam, one with additional resources

available with which to survive summer stressor events. Triploid and diploid M mercenaria

were challenged in a laboratory setting to determine differences in survival.

Aquaculture of Mercenaria mercenaria in Florida

Aquaculture of Mercenaria mercenaria is a multimillion dollar industry in the state of

Florida, bringing in 13 million in net sales in 2003, and 10.7 million in 2005 (USDA 2004,

USDA 2006). There are three regions of Florida where hard clam aquaculture is concentrated,

the "Big Bend" region of Dixie, Levy and Citrus counties; the south west region of Charlotte and

Lee counties, and the central east region, of Volusia, Brevard and Indian River counties (USDA

2002, USDA 2004). Cedar Key, in the "Big Bend" region and Charlotte Harbor in the southwest

region are the main areas of clam aquaculture on the west coast of Florida.









Techniques to improve hard clam aquaculture in the state of Florida were investigated by

Menzel in the 1950s and 1960s (1962). Hard clam aquaculture became more prevalent in the

1970s when attempts were made to supplement wild stock ofM. mercenaria in the Indian River

Lagoon (Philippakos et al. 2001). In 1991, as part of a job-retraining program funded by the

state, shellfish aquaculture was introduced to the west coast of Florida and is now a primary

source of income for its rural coastal residents (Colson & Sturmer 2000). In recent years, M.

mercenaria has become one of the most economically important aquaculture species in Florida's

marine environment (Arnold et al. 2000).

Description of Cedar Key and Environmental Factors

Cedar Key, in the "Big Bend" region of Florida is one of the main areas of clam

aquaculture on the west coast of Florida. The Cedar Key Estuary is open to the Gulf of Mexico

but water quality over the clam beds can be significantly influenced by freshwater inputs from

the Suwannee River system (Colson & Sturmer 2000). Water quality monitoring stations were

deployed on several clam leases and data on temperature, salinity and dissolved oxygen were

collected every 30 minutes. Reported water quality values and additional archived data are

available from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS 2007),

Division of Aquaculture, http://sondes.floridaaquaculture.com/sondes/archiveintro.htm. Gulf

Jackson, one of the most productive clam leases on the west coast, frequently reaches a low of 15

parts per thousand (ppt), and reaches a low of 2 to 12 ppt at least once every year (Figure 1-2, A)

(FDACS 2007). In addition to annual fluctuations in salinity, hard clams in Cedar Key are

exposed to regular tidal fluctuations of 5 ppt, and can experience extreme fluctuations of 24 ppt

over 24 hours (Baker et al. 2005). Summer water temperatures range from 26C to 320C, with

extremes of 34C to 350C in June and July (Figure 1-2, E). Temperatures of 32C can continue

into October (FDACS 2007). Dissolved oxygen levels are extremely variable on the Gulf









Jackson clam lease in Cedar Key (Figure 1-2, C). Dissolved oxygen concentrations can fall

below 5 milligrams per liter (mg-L-1), every year, April through October. In 2002, short duration

anoxic (<1 mg-L1) events occurred in both April and June (FDACS 2007).

Description of Charlotte Harbor and Environmental Factors

Charlotte Harbor is located on the southwest coast of Florida, and is a more recent area

than Cedar Key for Mercenaria mercenaria aquaculture. The Charlotte Harbor Estuary is

separated from the Gulf of Mexico by barrier islands, causing reduced mixing, increasing

residence time within the estuary and influencing water quality (McPherson et al. 1996). Little

water quality data are available for Charlotte Harbor. We know however that salinity in

Charlotte Harbor fluctuates as a result of freshwater runoff from the Caloosahatchee, Myakka,

and Peace Rivers. Incomplete data sets from 2002 and 2003, which do not include the rainy

season, show that in May of 2002 salinity remained above 35 ppt (Figure 1-2, B), while the

lowest salinity (17 ppt) was recorded in July of 2003 (FDACS 2007). Charlotte Harbor

temperatures range from 26C to 320C in May through October. In July of 2002 (Figure 1-2, F)

and June of 2003, water temperatures stayed between 30C and 32C for three weeks (FDACS

2007). Charlotte Harbor shows similar variability in dissolved oxygen levels as Cedar Key, with

several hypoxic events occurring May through August. In July of 2002 (Figure 1-2, D),

dissolved oxygen concentrations remained below 5 mg-L-1 for seventeen days, and frequently

approached 0 mg-L-1 for short periods of time.

Anatomy and Behavior of Mercenaria mercenaria

Mercenaria mercenaria are important members of the benthic community. They burrow

into the sediment which protects them from predation, stabilizes their movement and facilitates

feeding (Doering 1982). They are suspension feeders and use specialized cilia on their gills to

pump water through their siphons and into the mantle cavity which facilitates feeding, respiration









and waste removal (Hamwi 1969, Roegner & Mann 1991). The rate of water movement through

the mantle cavity can be measured directly or indirectly. Rate of water movement is measured

directly by measuring actual pumping rate, the volume of water pumped in a given time. Rate of

water movement may also be measured indirectly by measuring clearance rate, the amount of

particles removed from the water column in a given time (Grizzle 2001). Changes in activity,

such as a decrease in pumping or burial, may be useful indicators of adverse environmental

conditions. For a more detailed review ofM. mercenaria anatomy see Eble (2001).

Physiology, Distribution and Survival of Mercenaria mercenaria

The physiology, distribution and survival of Mercenaria mercenaria in the field can be

influenced by many factors including water quality, food availability, physical disturbances,

biological disturbances, pollution and planting parameters. We know that these factors can

affect survival, but it is difficult to understand to what extent their individual and combined

effects are responsible for field mortalities (Kraeuter & Castagna 1989). Reduction in

physiological and behavioral activities, such as burial, food consumption and oxygen uptake, has

been noted in several studies in response to suboptimal ranges of temperature, salinity and

dissolved oxygen (Chanley 1957, Hamwi 1969, Castagna & Chanley 1973, Van Winkle 1976).

Roegner and Mann (1991), Eversole (1987), and Grizzle (2001) have reviewed the biology,

reproduction and physiology ofM mercenaria.

M. mercenaria can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, as indicated by its native range

extending from the Gulf of St. Lawrence in Canada to the Indian River Lagoon, Florida (Abbott

1974). M. mercenaria are also present along the Gulf Coast to Texas (Abbott 1974). There was

a significant population increase along the west coast of Florida in the 1990s after it became an

important aquaculture species (Arnold et al. 2004). Growth of juvenile and adult M mercenaria

is greatly influenced by temperature, with maximum growth occurring at 200C and shell growth









ceasing at temperatures above 31C (Ansell 1968, Rice & Pechenik 1992). In the southeastern

United States, slow growth bands occur in the summer and fall indicating sub optimal growth,

likely due to high temperatures, while fast growth bands occur during winter and spring when

water temperatures are cooler (Jones et al. 1990, Arnold et al. 1991). Maximum pumping rates

for food and oxygen consumption occur between 20 to 250C (Hamwi 1969). Temperatures of

6C and 32C represent the low and high limits at which pumping rates are no longer detected;

although some clams may remain open (Hamwi 1969). M.mercenaria may be able to handle

rapid changes in water temperatures within its tolerance limits, as demonstrated by a return to

pumping within a few hours following a shift from cold water at 5C to 240C (Hamwi 1969). M.

mercenaria is living at its thermal tolerance limit in Florida, as indicated by poor growth during

summer months and decreased pumping rates at temperatures near 32C. This indicates that M

mercenaria could be negatively affected by summers with higher than average temperatures.

M. mercenaria is an estuarine species and is typically found in regions with salinities

ranging from 20 to 30 ppt (Grizzle et al. 2001). Castagna and Chanley (1973) report the lower

salinity limit for survival to be 12.5 ppt for adult M mercenaria, with an upper range of 35 ppt,

with limited survival possible up to 46 ppt. Wells (1957) noted a correlation between areas of

low salinity, near tributaries and river inlets, and an absence or lowered density ofM.

mercenaria, suggesting that salinity structures the population distribution within an estuary.

Salinities between 23 to 27 ppt are optimal for maximum food and oxygen consumption in M.

mercenaria. Pumping rates are inhibited below 15 ppt and above 36 ppt (Hamwi 1969) and Van

Winkle (1976) noted decreased activity at salinities below 14 to 21 ppt. Castagna and Chanley

(1973) found that burial activity for some bivalves was reduced or completely inhibited by

salinities below 15 ppt. In addition, some bivalves exhibited valve gaping behavior and a lack of









response to repeated tactile stimuli, appearing dead, but eventually closing when removed from

the water. When exposed to low salinities (<12.5 ppt), M. mercenaria closes its shell, creating a

water tight seal that protects the body tissues from unfavorable conditions (Chanley 1957).

Survival ofM. mercenaria at lower or higher salinities can be affected by several factors

including individual size, water temperature, salinity fluctuations, genetic history and the source

of freshwater (Chanley 1957).

M. mercenaria are also affected by dissolved oxygen levels. At dissolved oxygen levels of

5 mg-L-1 or more, M. mercenaria are able to maintain oxygen uptake rates by increasing the

efficiency with which they remove oxygen from the water column (Hamwi 1969). However,

below 5 mg-L-1 oxygen uptake is reduced and anaerobic and aerobic respiration may occur

simultaneously (Hammen 1980). Under extreme environmental conditions, below their activity

threshold, M. mercenaria will close their valves and resort to anaerobic respiration (Hamwi

1969), they are able to sustain complete valve closure for up to 18 days at 1 to 60C (Loosanoff

1939). Dissolved oxygen levels less than 5 mg-L-1 (hypoxia) are not thought to be detrimental on

their own, but can lead to reduced survival when coupled with higher temperatures (Baker et al.

2002).

Reproduction in Mercenaria mercenaria

As juveniles, hard clams have both male and female gonads present, although

spermatogenesis dominates this life stage. Following the juvenile stage, hard clams develop into

adults with separate sexes, although males appear to retain the ability to change into females at a

later time (Loosanoff 1936). Reproduction or spawning events in M. mercenaria are primarily

influenced by temperature, as demonstrated by the latitudinal variability in gametogenic cycles

(Hesselman et al. 1989). Spawning typically occurs in water temperatures ranging from 20 to

25C throughout the geographical range (Hesselman et al. 1989). In southern populations,









spawning begins earlier in the year with bimodal or polymodal peaks, two or more spawning

events, due to temperatures reaching the critical range sooner, and for longer periods of time

(Heffernan et al. 1989, Hesselman et al. 1989). In Florida and Georgia, the spring spawn is

typically the largest (Heffernan et al. 1989, Hesselman et al. 1989). M. mercenaria can reach

sexual maturity in as little as one year in southern populations, at a shell length of 20 to 35 mm.

(Eversole 1980, Hesselman et al. 1989, and Walker & Heffernan 1994).

In clams, reproduction is an important aspect of the overall energy budget. Typically, non-

respired energy is partitioned into shell growth, somatic growth, and reproduction (Grizzle et al.

2001). Ansell et al. (1964) found that roughly 52% of annual organic production was released as

gametes and Eversole (2001) indicated that annual reproductive effort based on several studies

represents 26 to 46% of annual growth for both male and female clams. Eversole (2001) has

reviewed reproduction in M. mercenaria.

Induction of Triploidy in Mercenaria mercenaria

Mercenaria mercenaria are diploid in naturally occurring populations, meaning they have

two sets of chromosomes per cell. During reproduction one set from the maternal gamete (egg)

and one set from the paternal gamete (sperm) combine to create another diploid organism.

Triploids are organisms with three sets of chromosomes per cell. In free-spawning bivalve

mollusks, the egg is released just prior to the first meiotic division, which allows researchers to

induce triploids by suppressing either meiosis I or II. Suppression of a meiotic division results in

a diploid egg, which is then fertilized by a haploid sperm, forming a triploid organism

(Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991). Triploidy can be induced using a variety of methods, including

pressure, thermal, or chemical shock, or by mating tetraploid organisms with diploid organisms.

In this study cytochalasin B (CB) was used as a chemical shock to suppress meiosis II. CB, one









of a class of fungal metabolites, is thought to inhibit micro-filament formation in cells (Copeland

1974) and is commonly used to induce triploidy in bivalves (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991).

Several studies have shown an increase in growth of triploid bivalves as compared to

diploids, especially following diploid spawning events (Guo & Allen 1994, Eversole et al. 1996,

Hand et al. 1999, Brake et al. 2004). These differences have been attributed to several

hypotheses including increased heterozygosity, polyploidy gigantism, and energy reallocation.

Increased heterozygosity suggests that greater genetic diversity should manifest in higher fitness

and therefore higher growth of triploid organisms due to an extra allele at each loci (Beaumont &

Fairbrother 1991, Garnier-Gere et al. 2002). The hypothesis for polyploidy gigantism states that

increased growth in triploids is a result of increased cell size due to an additional chromosome

without a reduction in cell number per organ that is typically seen in higher organisms including

fish (Guo & Allen 1994, Nell 2002). A third hypothesis says that triploids are sterile and as a

result put little or no energy towards reproduction, instead diverting this energy to somatic

growth (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991, Eversole et al. 1996). Triploids are supposed to be

sterile as a result of the two homologous chromosomes from the female being unable to synapse

at meiosis (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991).

Triploidy has been induced in M. mercenaria in two previous studies with contrasting

results. Hidu et al. (1988) found no difference in size between diploids and triploids over three

growing seasons in Maine. In contrast, Eversole et al. (1996) found that triploid hard clams were

significantly larger than diploids in South Carolina waters, but only after 47 months and two

spawning events. The triploids in their study did not respond to spawning stimuli and showed

reduced and abnormal production of gametes upon histological examination (Eversole et al.

1996). The results of these two studies may have differed because the diploid clams in the









Eversole study had experienced two spawning seasons, while the diploid clams in the Maine

study had not yet spawned. These two observations lend support to the energy reallocation

hypothesis, which states that sterile triploids will divert energy from reproductive growth into

somatic growth.

Methods of Investigation

This study is a subset of a larger study to examine the potential for improvement of Florida

Mercenaria mercenaria aquaculture using triploid induction. Clam farmers have reported lower

than average survival (-53% on average down from 67% in 1999) during the summer months

(USDA 2004), with a complete loss of newly planted seed for Cedar Key farmers in 2002 (Baker

et al. 2005). The objective of this portion of the study was to determine, in a laboratory setting,

if triploid hard clams have a better survival rate than diploids when subjected to environmentally

stressful conditions. Conditions for this experiment were based on results from previous

experiments and observed water quality parameters in both Cedar Key and Charlotte Harbor. M.

mercenaria were challenged with salinities of 10 ppt, 25 ppt and 40 ppt, to reflect both low and

high extremes found in both locations. Dissolved oxygen was maintained at normoxic (>5 mg-L-

1) and hypoxic (<5 mg-L1) levels. Since temperature apparently exacerbates the effects of

salinity and dissolved oxygen, experiments were conducted at 320C, which represents a stressful

temperature but one that is frequently observed in both estuaries. These experimental factors

were chosen to cause physiological stress in order to determine possible causes of mortalities in

the field and to test the hypothesis that triploids differ from diploids in their tolerance of extreme

environmental conditions.














-o "- "-- _

.... ... ...


11


Gulf of
Mexico


C ,hN ~


Figure 1-1. Map of shellfish harvest areas for clams, mussels and oysters. Clam farming is
centered on the west coast in areas 25 to 37, surrounding Cedar Key, and 56, 58 and
62 near Charlotte Harbor. Clam harvesting of natural populations occurs along areas
of the west coast and the entire east coast (FDACS 2007).


U


Is
APSaf


i2


P.1runij C4 V


w jFa


ta

Mi~rroet


I!
_j












Sanfiily Key Clam Lease, Charlotte Harbor


30
25
20 -rpV
15
S 10-
1 5
0
1 4 7 10 13 17 20 23 26 30


. i1


1 4 7 10 14 17 20 23 27 30


1 4 7 10 13 16 19 22 25 28













1 4 8 12 16 19 23 27 31


1 4 7 10 13 16 19 22 25 28 31


1 4 7 10 13 16 19 22 25 28 31


Time (days)



Figure 1-2. Extreme water quality values recorded at the Gulf Jackson clam lease in Cedar Key,
FL and the Sandfly Key clam lease in Charlotte Harbor, FL: A, April 2003 B, May
2002 C, June 2002 D, July 2002 E, July 2003 F, July 2002 (FDACS 2007).


Em 12
1o
A 10

a 6
o 4

. 2
0
C


Gulf Jackson Clam Lease, Cedar Key


-
-









CHAPTER 2
MATERIALS AND METHODS

Production and Grow-out History of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mecenaria

Triploid and diploid Mercenaria mercenaria were produced by Dr. John Scarpa of Harbor

Branch Oceanographic Institution (HBOI) during the spring of 2004. Triploidy was induced

using cytochalasin B, a chemical that prevents the formation of polar bodies and, thus, retention

of a set of chromosomes. Cytochalasin B was applied to fertilized M. mercenaria eggs during

meiosis I (MI) and meiosis II (MII) development phases. Spawn from a single set of parents

were separated into three groups to which the following treatments were applied: 1) triploidy was

induced during meiosis I, 2) triploidy was induced during meiosis II, or 3) no treatment was

applied, leaving the clams diploid. For a more detailed description oftriploid production, see

methods by Allen and Bushek (1992). This process was repeated to create four separate

families, each with diploid, triploid MI, and triploid MII sibling groups. M. mercenaria were

raised in the HBOI laboratory to a size typically used in the field by clam farmers and planted in

summer of 2004 on two clam leases in Charlotte Harbor, Florida and on one clam lease in Cedar

Key. Field studies were disrupted during the 2004 hurricane season with the loss of all M.

mercenaria planted on clam leases in Charlotte Harbor. As a result, all remaining M

mercenaria, comprising two families were relocated from Cedar Key, FL to Charlotte Harbor,

FL in the fall of 2004. M. mercenaria from two families were sampled from Charlotte Harbor

during November 2005 and 125 clams from each group were sent to HBOI for analysis of

condition index, histology, and ploidy.

Group C diploidd control) and group D (triploid MII) from the November sampling event

were reserved for use in laboratory challenges and represented a single family. Group D had a

total of 278 clams and prior ploidy analyses indicated that this group was 80% triploid, while









other family groups were estimated to be 20 to 30% triploid. Group D was transported to the

University of Florida laboratory facilities and individually sampled to determine ploidy state,

ensuring 100% triploidy for experimental use. Meanwhile, group C remained at HBOI in a flow-

through system.

Tissue Sampling and Ploidy Determination of Triploid Mercenaria mercenaria

Mercenaria mercenaria from group D were placed in a 38 liter aquarium with the ventral

margin facing up, on a grid platform of a styrene lighting panel. When an individual clam

opened, a plastic coffee stirrer was inserted between the valve edges to keep the clam slightly

open. The clam was then removed from the water and a BD Tuberculin Syringe with a 26 gauge

needle was inserted into the anterior adductor muscle and a minute amount of hemolymph was

withdrawn. Hemolymph was ejected into a 1.5 mL plastic microcentrifuge tube and 0.5 mL of

DAPI/detergent/DMSO solution was added (Allen & Bushek 1992). Samples were placed on

dry ice, if available, or on regular ice and then moved to an ultra cold freezer (-72F) within 8 hr

or 30 min, respectively. M. mercenaria were individually numbered to correspond to

hemolymph sample number and returned to a holding tank. Hemolymph samples were packed

with dry ice pellets and shipped priority overnight to Dr. John Scarpa at HBOI. At HBOI,

hemolymph samples were assessed for ploidy using flow cytometry (Allen & Bushek 1992).

Following ploidy sampling, group D was returned to HBOI and maintained in a flow-through

system with group C until the laboratory challenge. Temperatures in the flow-through system

fluctuated around 21C and salinities around 25 ppt. Phytoplankton was added to the flow

through system to ensure excess food was available for suspension feeding by M. mercenaria.

Of the 278 M. mercenaria in group D, 215 were found to be triploid. Only those individuals

known to be triploids were subsequently included in group D and used in laboratory challenges.









Experimental Aquarium System Design

There were a total of twenty four experimental systems, each system was independent and

consisted of up to three individual tanks with a single sump. Measurements for aquaria system

are reported in English units to facilitate future use of the design and purchase of standard parts.

Individual Tanks

Large Kritter Keepers (model # 20025, Lee, San Marcos, CA) were used for individual

tanks; they were rectangular (14.5" long by 8.75" wide by 9.25" high) and capable of holding up

to 19 liters of water. A 1" hole was drilled on one of the narrow sides of the tank, the center

being 1 /2" from the top, and equidistant from the sides. This hole was fitted with a 12" tee

eliminator and 1/2" mnpt, male national pipe thread, by barb fitting, reducing tank capacity to 17

liters. To prevent leaking, a rubber washer of 1" inner diameter, 2" outer diameter was glued

with silicon around the tee eliminator on the inside of the tank. This served as a passive drain

with 1/2" return tubing, keeping water levels from overflowing tank sides. Return tubing entered

a slanted drainage manifold with three upturned 1" pvc tee's, one slip elbow and one slip by fnpt

female national pipe thread, elbow connected to a barb with 1" tubing which returned water to

the main sump.

In order to create a sand bed for the clams to bury in, platforms (Figure 2-1) were

constructed using Plaskolite white, egg-crate style, styrene plastic lighting panels. Platforms

were cut to fit inside the tanks and were raised off the bottom and supported by 1" sections of /2"

pvc connected to the platform by cable ties. Nylon mesh of 125am was used to keep the sand

above the platform and was secured using /4" tubing split lengthwise on long sides. Silicone

glue was used along all sides to secure platforms to tanks and to ensure water up-welled through

the sand bed, rather than around. Tubing (1/4"), which was used deliver water below the sand

bed, was inserted through the mesh and held in place with rubber washers (which also kept sand









above the platform). The /4" tubing extended below the platform and formed a circular loop

containing three equally spaced 14" tees which caused the water to circulate underneath the

platform, removing potential anoxic spots, and creating even up-welling through the sand.

Premium grade play sand was used for the sediment substrate. Prior to use, it was rinsed at least

four times with tap water until the water ran clear, followed by a rinse with reverse-osmosis

water.

Sump Tanks

Glass aquaria (38 liters) were used as sump tanks. The sump housed equipment and

allowed for water changes with minimal effect on individual tanks. Temperature was controlled

within the sump using a 200 watt Rena Cal Top Light submersible heater (Aquarium

Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Chalfont, PA). A "Rid-Volt" titanium grounding probe (Taam, Inc., CA)

prevented electrical currents from developing in the system. Water was pumped from the sump

to the individual tank by a Quiet One Pump (model number 1200, Pentair Aquatics, El Monte,

CA) with a 12" mntp port from the pump connected to a 1/2" fntp to 12" barb. Tubing (1/2")

connected to a second 1/2" barb with a 34" mntp connector attached to a 34" check valve to prevent

back flow from the tank to the sump in case of power loss. The check valve connected to a 34"

pvc manifold containing tee fittings for 1/2" ball valves. The 1/2" ball valve had a 1/2" mntp x /4"

barb connected to the 1/" tubing for the individual tanks. Water return to the sump is described

in the individual tank section.

To minimize fluctuations in temperature due to external room conditions, outsides (sides

and bottom) of the individual tanks and sumps were fitted with 34" insulation, including a

removable lid. The lids aided in preventing evaporation and contamination of water in the

tanks. All external pvc pipes were insulated using /4" thick pipe insulation (Figure 2-2).









Air stones delivering air or nitrogen, depending on the treatment, were placed in both the

tank and the sump. Dissolved oxygen levels were recorded in mg-L-1 and percent saturation as

indicated by an YSI (Yellow Springs Instrument, Ohio) 600 QS sonde and 650 MDS data logger.

Seawater Storage

Seawater (approximately 35 ppt) was obtained from University of Florida Whitney Marine

Laboratory, located at Marineland, Florida on the East coast of the state, using a portable 550

gallon container. Seawater was kept in a 3000 gallon holding tank adjacent to the laboratory at

Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences in Gainesville until needed for experimental use.

Water was pumped to the lab and through a filtration series which included cartridge filters,

media filters and U/V sterilizer, and into six 105 gallon (397.5 liters) storage tanks. The

cartridge filtration included a 100 |tm pre-filter and three 20 |tm filters that combined to create

75 ft2 (6.97 m2) of surface area. Cartridge filtration was followed by 2 media filters containing

2072 in3 (0.03 m3) of carbon media. The U/V sterilizer had a 40 W bulb and processed water at

25 gpm @ 15,000 tWs/cm2.

Water of 0 ppt was produced by reverse osmosis (R/O) using a Kent Marine R/O 200 HiF

(Franklin, WI) system and stored in a 180 gallon storage tank. Water in the storage tanks was

maintained at the salinities and temperatures (Finnex HC-0800 and TH-500 Titanium Heater)

used in the experiment, allowing fast and accurate water changes.

Experimental Design of Tolerance Challenge

This experiment was designed as a two by three factorial, with temperature held constant

in all treatments at 320C. Salinity was maintained at 10 ppt, 25 ppt, and 40 ppt and oxygen was

maintained at normoxic levels above 5 mg-L-1 (72 to 85% saturation, depending on salinity) or at

hypoxic levels of less than 2 mg-L-1 (28 to 34% saturation). At 32C the expected dissolved









oxygen levels for 100% saturation for 10 ppt, 25 ppt and 40 ppt are 6.92 mg-L-1, 6.38 mg-L-1, and

5.88 mg-L-1 respectively. These values were chosen to reflect summer conditions in SW Florida

estuaries. Treatments were blocked to minimize potential room effect on temperature, for a total

of four blocks, with one treatment replicate randomly assigned within each block. M.

mercenaria were randomly assigned, with 9 triploid clams, group D and 9 diploid clams, group

C in each replicate.

Acclimation of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mercenaria

Mercenaria mercenaria were acclimated in three 30-gallon tanks to 320C and 10 ppt, 25

ppt or 40 ppt. Temperature was raised by 2C per day from a starting temperature of 21C until

the experimental temperature of 32C was reached. Salinity was adjusted 3 ppt per day from a

starting value of 25 ppt until experimental salinities of 10 ppt and 40 ppt were reached. Lower

salinities were adjusted by adding R/O water to acclimation tanks. Higher salinities were

adjusted by slowly adding a stock solution of 100 ppt to acclimation tanks. The stock solution

was made by adding Instant Ocean synthetic sea salt (Aquarium Systems, Ohio) to R/O water

and stirring until thoroughly dissolved. Acclimation schedules were staggered so that each

acclimation tank reached experimental values simultaneously; tanks with starting conditions

furthest from the intended experimental values were begun first.

Health Assessment of Triploid and Diploid Mercenaria mercenaria

Observations of Mercenaria mercenaria mortality, siphon extension, and burial were

conducted at 12 hour intervals. For each tank, a rough count of siphon extension was made to

assess the presence/absence of filtering activity (Figure 2-3). M. mercenaria were considered

buried when they were completely or partially buried into the substrate in a natural position, i.e.

posterior margin of the shell extending upwards from the sediment (Figure 2-4). Gaping

behavior, if any, was noted. Gaping M mercenaria had their shells open, mantle covering or









partially covering the opening, and no siphon extension behavior (Figure 2-5). M. mercenaria

on the sediment surface were assessed for mortality, counted and temporarily removed to a

holding basket. M. mercenaria within the sediment were uncovered, placed in a holding basket,

assessed for mortality, and counted. Sediment was thoroughly mixed and evenly distributed

within the tank.

Mortality was assessed in two ways: failure to respond when touched by a blunt probe

along the mantle edge, or inability to remain closed when manually compressed. Dead

individuals were not returned to the system. The observation time was recorded and the shell

length, height, and width of dead individuals were measured to the nearest 0.1 mm using digital

calipers. All non-gaping M mercenaria were considered alive and were returned to the sediment

surface of the tank. Tanks were monitored for 21 days or until all individuals within a treatment

had died.

Water Quality Parameters in Aquarium Systems

Temperature, salinity and dissolved oxygen levels were monitored at 12 hour intervals

with an YSI (Yellow Springs Instrument, Ohio) 600 QS sonde and 650 MDS data logger. Prior

to each sampling event, the YSI was calibrated to 100% oxygen saturation following standard

protocol. Salinity was calibrated using a typical marine standard of 55.91 [[S/cm held at 320C.

Salinity measurements were randomly verified using a refractometer. In addition to

measurements taken every 12 hours, temperature was monitored continuously with Fisherbrand

digital thermometers (model number 15-077-8D, Pittsburgh, PA). Digital thermometers stored

the minimum and maximum temperature, providing a rough estimate of the daily temperature

variation in each tank. Salinity was adjusted with R/O or hypersaline water, as needed.

Ammonia and nitrite were checked daily with ion specific colorimeters (model # HI93700 and









#HI93707, Hanna, Woonsocket, RI). A 2 ml sample of tank water was placed into a Hanna

cuvet and diluted to 8 ml with distilled water. The cuvet was gently swirled until the sample was

completely mixed, wiped clean, and a zero reading was taken. Ammonia or nitrite reagents were

added to the cuvet, following the manufacturer's instructions for seawater analysis, and values

were recorded. Readings were multiplied by five to correct for initial dilution.

Data Analysis

Water quality data were summarized by calculating the means for each individual tank, and

the means for the treatment (n=4 tanks). Burial data was calculated as the number of Mercenaria

mercenaria that buried or attempted to bury during a 12 hour period over the total number of M

mercenaria present in the tank during that time period. Burial data was analyzed using a linear

regression in SAS 9.1.

To compare survival of triploid and diploid M mercenaria, survival analysis was

performed, using the Lifereg procedure available on SAS Version 9.1. Survival analysis is

designed to evaluate the occurrence of events over time. In this study, survival was assessed

every twelve hours for twenty one days. M. mercenaria alive at the end of the experiment are

considered right censored data, in that they did not experience an event during the given

timeframe, which is taken into account in survival analysis (Allison 1995). Survival data is

binomially distributed; each individual is either alive (0) or dead (1) at each given time.

Therefore, a logit regression is performed using the maximum likelihood method to fit a

regression line (Sokal & Rohlf 1995). Survival rates were calculated from the slope of the

regression line (0), using the equation 100(e 1). Further details on survival analysis using

SAS are provided in Allison (1995).

















Figure 2-1. Experimental tanks. A, View of sand platform from below showing 14" tees used for
circulating water beneath sand bed. B, Platform glued to sides of tank. C, Side view
of the tank, showing the platform supporting a sand bed and clams.


Figure 2-2. Experimental system. A, Close up of one system, including three replicate tanks and
one sump. B, View of wet lab set-up during experiment.


Figure 2-3. Examples ofM. mercenaria siphon extension.






















Figure 2-4. M. mercenaria burial positions. A, Surface (not counted as buried). B, Partially
buried. C, Completely buried.












A. B

Figure 2-5. A, Example of gaping behavior. B, Example of a dead clam.









CHAPTER 3
RESULTS

Water Quality

Most water quality parameters remained near the target values throughout the experiment

(Table 1-6, Appendix 1). The only parameter with significant excursions from the target value

was dissolved oxygen in the hypoxia treatments (Table 3-1). Periodic spikes of dissolved

oxygen above 5 mg-L-1 in the hypoxic treatment were a result of a loss of nitrogen gas flow when

a gas cylinder ran empty. These periods of normoxia (> 5 mg-L1) did not last for long periods of

time, as they were either anticipated, or occurred at a mortality check. After a new cylinder of

nitrogen was started, dissolved oxygen levels returned to below 2 mg-L-1 within 30 minutes.

Survival Analysis

Survival analysis indicated that salinity (df= 2, 2 = 3144.5, p < 0.0001) and dissolved

oxygen (df= 1, 2 = 67.9, p < 0.0001) had significant effects onMercenaria mercenaria survival.

Survival of diploid and triploid M mercenaria differed significantly in two of the treatments, 25

ppt hypoxia and 10 ppt hypoxia. In the 25 ppt hypoxia treatment (Figure 3-1, C), diploid M

mercenaria began dying on day 14, with 55% surviving to the final day (day 21). Triploid M

mercenaria began dying on day 17, with 89% surviving to the final day (day 21). Triploids had

a 16.4% higher survival rate than did diploids between day 14 and day 21, the time period in

which mortalities occurred (log y = 4.028 0.179[diploid], df = 1, 2 = 5.82, p = 0.0159). In the

10 ppt hypoxia treatment, triploid and diploid M mercenaria began dying on days 3 and 4,

respectively (Figure 3-1, A), with 0% survival on day 7. Diploid M mercenaria had a 7.6%

higher survival rate than did triploids between day 3 and 7, the time period in which mortalities

occurred (log y = 2.44 + 0.0736[diploid], df = 1, 2 = 4.28, p = 0.0387).









Survival of diploid and triploid M mercenaria did not differ for the remaining treatments:

10 ppt normoxia, 25 ppt normoxia, 40 ppt hypoxia and 40 ppt normoxia. In the 10 ppt normoxia

treatment (Figure 3-1, B) diploid and triploid M mercenaria began dying on day 3 and

mortalities of both occurred at regular intervals until all the individuals in the treatment were

dead, on day 7. No mortalities of diploid or triploid M mercenaria occurred in the 25 ppt

normoxia treatment (Figure 3-1, D). Both diploid and triploid M mercenaria in the 40 ppt

normoxia treatment (Figure 3-1, F) had 97% survival. In the 40 ppt hypoxia treatments (Figure

3-1, E), diploid M mercenaria began dying on day 4, with 22% surviving to the final day (day

21), while triploid M mercenaria began dying on day 8, with 31% surviving to the final day.

Reburial Rates

Reburial rates refer to the proportion ofM. mercenaria in a tank re-burying in 12 hours

following excavation from the sand. M. mercenaria in the 25 ppt normoxia treatment had an

average reburial rate of 66.5% (Figure 3-2, B). Although average reburial rate ranged from

39.6% to 87.5%, there was no significant change in reburial rate over the course of the

experiment (r2 = 0.0074). Some individuals, both buried and unburied, were open and siphoning

at each 12 hour interval in the 25 ppt normoxia treatment for the duration of the experiment.

Clams in the 25 ppt hypoxia treatment had an average reburial rate of 20.8% over the course of

the experiment, with a range from 0% to 65.3% (Figure 3-2, A). Reburial rates declined over the

course of the experiment (r2 = 0.5287, p < 0.0001). Some individuals in the 25 ppt hypoxia

treatment were open and siphoning at each 12 hour interval for the duration of the experiment.

No clams in the 10 ppt normoxia or 10 ppt hypoxia treatments buried during the

experiment and no siphon activity was noted. Clams began to gape prior to mortalities.

Clams in the 40 ppt normoxia treatment had an average reburial rate of 55.3%, with a

range of 29.5% to 86.9% (Figure 3-2, D). Reburial rate increased slightly over the course of the









experiment (r2 = 0.1336, p < 0.0001). Some individuals were open and siphoning at each 12

hour interval in the 40 ppt normoxia treatment for the duration of the experiment. Clams in the

40 ppt hypoxia treatment had an average reburial rate of 14.2%, with a range of 0% to 56.9%

(Figure 3-2, C). Reburial rates declined over the course of the experiment (r2 = 0.4732, p <

0.0001). Some individuals in the 40 ppt hypoxia treatment were open and siphoning at each 12

hour interval for the duration of the experiment.









Table 3-1. Water quality values averaged across treatments.


Treatment
10 ppt, Normoxia
10 ppt, Normoxia
10 ppt, Normoxia
10 ppt, Normoxia
10 ppt, Normoxia
10 ppt, Normoxia

25 ppt, Normoxia
25 ppt, Normoxia
25 ppt, Normoxia
25 ppt, Normoxia
25 ppt, Normoxia
25 ppt, Normoxia

40 ppt, Normoxia
40 ppt, Normoxia
40 ppt, Normoxia
40 ppt, Normoxia
40 ppt, Normoxia
40 ppt, Normoxia

10 ppt, Hypoxia
10 ppt, Hypoxia
10 ppt, Hypoxia
10 ppt, Hypoxia
10 ppt, Hypoxia
10 ppt, Hypoxia

25 ppt, Hypoxia
25 ppt, Hypoxia
25 ppt, Hypoxia
25 ppt, Hypoxia
25 ppt, Hypoxia
25 ppt, Hypoxia

40 ppt, Hypoxia
40 ppt, Hypoxia
40 ppt, Hypoxia
40 ppt, Hypoxia
40 ppt, Hypoxia
40 ppt, Hypoxia


Water Quality Value
Temperature (C)
Salinity (ppt)
Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1)
% Dissolved Oxygen
Ammonia (ppm)
Nitrite (ppm)

Temperature (C)
Salinity (ppt)
Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1)
% Dissolved Oxygen
Ammonia (ppm)
Nitrite (ppm)

Temperature (C)
Salinity (ppt)
Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L-1)
% Dissolved Oxygen
Ammonia (ppm)
Nitrite (ppm)

Temperature (C)
Salinity (ppt)
Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1)
% Dissolved Oxygen
Ammonia (ppm)
Nitrite (ppm)

Temperature (C)
Salinity (ppt)
Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L-1)
% Dissolved Oxygen
Ammonia (ppm)
Nitrite (ppm)

Temperature (C)
Salinity (ppt)
Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1)
% Dissolved Oxygen
Ammonia (ppm)
Nitrite (ppm)


Average
32.3
10.8
6.33
89.4
2.03
0.16

32.2
25.3
6.04
95.3
0.76
0.14

32.2
40.3
5.56
95.0
0.79
0.11

32.1
10.4
1.56
11.5
2.19
0.13

32.2
25.5
0.75
9.0
0.79
0.11

32.2
40.3
0.76
10.0
0.96
0.10


Minimum
31.4
10.2
5.36
78.2
0.53
0.03

31.1
23.5
5.55
87.6
0.00
0.01

30.7
37.6
5.03
84.9
0.00
0.01

31.1
10.0
0.22
3.5
0.34
0.04

30.6
24.5
0.24
3.8
0.00
0.00

30.4
37.6
0.20
3.4
0.00
0.00


Maximum
33.1
11.3
6.96
95.6
4.59
0.40

33.4
26.9
6.52
101.8
2.29
0.29

33.4
42.4
6.05
102.8
2.44
0.23

33.1
10.8
5.21
20.9
4.36
0.29

33.5
26.9
4.31
31.5
2.38
0.23

33.3
42.2
4.12
35.1
2.48
0.26


Standard
Error
0.148
0.087
0.109
2.12
0.526
0.050

0.075
0.105
0.036
0.58
0.137
0.015

0.089
0.171
0.033
0.60
0.148
0.011

0.168
0.073
0.408
2.53
0.568
0.032

0.089
0.080
0.114
0.94
0.153
0.013

0.087
0.160
0.113
1.09
0.152
0.014


" ~ "'














-- Diploid 10 ppt Hypoxia
- Triploid 10 ppt Hypoxia


-+-Diploid 10 ppt Normoxia
---Triploid 10 ppt Nonnoxia


0 3 6 9 12 15 18 21 0 3 6 9 12 15 18 21


:s;tss:esss;es:;nsnss:;es;


-*-Diploid 25 ppt Hypoxia
--Tilploid 25 ppt Hypoxia


0 3 6 9 12 15 18 21


-*-Diploid 40 ppt Hypoxia [
--Triploid 40 ppt Hypoxia


I 3 6 9 12 15 18 21


0 -

0 -

0 -
-0 -Diploid 25 ppt Normoxia
---Triploid 25 ppt Normoxia
0 1 111 n ,
0 3 6 9 12 15 18 21

IF)



0 -

0 -

0 -

--0 Diploid 40 ppt Normoxia
-*-Tiiploid 40 ppt Nonnoxia


0 3 6 9 12 15 18 21


Time (days)


Figure 3-1. Percent cumulative survival of diploid and triploid hard clams, M. mercenaria: A, 10
ppt hypoxia B, 10 ppt normoxia C, 25 ppt hypoxia D, 25 ppt normoxia E, 40 ppt
hypoxia F, 40 ppt normoxia.


100

80

60

40

20

0


100

sD -
80

60

40 -


20
0















100 -


** *
* *4




44 +4 *^ *
**




*. *
* *, 4,* *
,4 *4**4**
4nnn<* 4* +


o l A ll I..2 4 6 8 1012..2.tl I -r014 1 T~'m' 1 22lt I

0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22


*
+* ** *
** *** **
** *, ** *, *4*

++ + + 44 *4 + *
4+ *4
4 44444,444 4


0 2 4


6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22


100


80s


4


,
* 4 *
* .....*
** *,,** ,* *
* ****** ** + *


0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18


20 22


**
so *



0 + *









0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22


Time (days)


Figure 3-2. Scatter plot of the proportion of diploid and triploid hard clams, M. mercenaria, that
buried within 12 hours following placement on the surface: A, 25 ppt hypoxia B, 25
ppt normoxia, C, 40 ppt hypoxia D, 40 ppt normoxia.


100


80









CHAPTER 4
DISCUSSION

This is the first study to look at survival differences between diploid and triploid

Mercenaria mercenaria in a controlled laboratory setting. I found that triploids had no

advantage over diploids under conditions of extreme salinity stress, or salinity stress combined

with hypoxia. Triploids did have a significant advantage over diploids when hypoxia was

combined with a non-stressful salinity of 25 ppt. However, the advantage seen in triploids did

not occur until day 15. Diploid M. mercenaria had a higher survival rate than triploid clams in

the 10 ppt hypoxia treatment. While the survival curves for diploids and triploids were

statistically significant, they were nearly identical to the survival curves for 10 ppt, normoxia

treatment in which no difference was seen.

There are several potential reasons a difference in survival between diploids and triploids

was not more apparent. These include 1) inadequate sample size, 2) the hypothesis of energy

reallocation in triploids does not occur, and 3) the hypothesis of energy reallocation was not

realized in this study because diploid clams had not experienced a spawning event.

First, my sample sizes were relatively small. During the 2004 hurricane season, a

significant portion of experimental clams were lost, and remaining families had low percentages

of triploidy. As a result, M. mercenaria used in this experiment were from one family, and only

a MII triploid group and sibling diploid group was available for experimental use. Ploidy

analysis was performed and yielded only enough triploid M mercenaria to have nine individuals

per tank or a total of thirty-six triploids and thirty-six diploids exposed to a particular treatment.

A higher sample size may help minimize individual variability, while more than one family and

triploid type would have increased the genetic diversity, resulting in a better estimation of what









could happen on a population level. Despite the lack of a larger sample size, a difference was

detected and it is uncertain if a larger sample size would have improved our results.

Second, while triploid clams used in this study had greatly reduced gametogenic

development when compared to diploids (S. Laramore, Harbor Branch Oceanogr. Inst., pers.

comm.), it is unclear if or how additional energy is stored, and whether or not that energy can be

readily accessed during stressor events. Several hypotheses have been proposed to account for

the often faster growth and larger size of polyploid organisms. The energy reallocation

hypothesis suggests that the growth advantage triploids have over diploids is due to the extra

energy that should be available when gametes are not formed. This hypothesis has not been

directly tested for the hard clam Mercenaria mercenaria. However, Eversole et al. (1996) found

that triploid hard clams exhibited reduced gametogenesis and did not release gametes when

exposed to spawning stimuli, which supports the energy reallocation hypothesis. In addition,

they found that triploids were significantly larger than diploids, following two spawning events

that occurred over 47 months (Eversole et al. 1996). In Florida, M. mercenaria typically reaches

market size following 10 to 18 months of growth in the field (Sturmer 2004) while in South

Carolina M mercenaria reaches market size after 24 months (Eldridge et.al. 1976). If a growth

advantage is not seen until 47 months in triploid M mercenaria, triploidy may not benefit the

aquaculture industry. This is in contrast to the success seen in oyster research, where triploid

oysters are typically bigger than their diploid cohorts at time of harvest (Nell 2002).

Two other hypotheses have been proposed to explain increased triploid growth; polyploidy

gigantism and increased heterozygosity. Polyploid gigantism suggests that cell volume increases

to accommodate an additional chromosome, without a reduction in cell number typically seen in

higher organisms (Guo & Allen 1994). This hypothesis has not been tested forM mercenaria









and would not necessarily translate into higher survival rates. Triploid Mulinia lateralis, the

dwarf surfclam, were significantly larger than diploids after 30 days, prior to sexual maturation

and continued to be larger after three months, following sexual maturation, but without

undergoing a spawning event, suggesting growth was not related to energy reallocation. While

the authors consider increased heterozygosity a possibility, they assert that the 72% increase in

size of triploids over diploids cannot be adequately explained by that hypothesis and suggest

instead that polyploidy gigantism is the primary cause of the increased growth of Mulinia

lateralis (Guo & Allen 1994). Increased heterozygosity, or increased genetic diversity,

sometimes referred to as "hybrid vigor", may lead to increased fitness, including faster growth

rates (Beaumont & Fairbrother 1991). Hawkins et. al. found overall that meiosis I triploids had

greater multi-locus enzyme heterozygosity and greater growth than either meiosis II triploids or

diploids in both the European flat oyster, Ostrea edulis (1994) and the Pacific oyster,

Crassostrea gigas (2000). This suggests that at least part of the higher growth seen in meiosis I

triploids is a result of increased allelic variation (Hawkins 2000). This phenomenon may not

have played a role in this study, since the triploids were created by suppressing meiosis II

division. In addition, it is uncertain if increased hybrid vigor would enhance survival during

stressor events. No hypothesis has been proven for all triploids and, in fact, all three hypotheses

may contribute to increased size oftriploid mollusks (Guo & Allen 1994, Hawkins et. al. 2000).

Third, while diploid clams used in this study apparently spawned in the fall prior to or

shortly after collection from the field, it is uncertain if diploid clams used in this study had

undergone a spring spawning event. Sexual maturity in hard clams is typically associated with

reaching 20 to 35 mm in shell length (Knaub & Eversole 1988). Diploid clams in this study had

an average shell length of 44.5 mm and a minimum and maximum of 28.9 mm and 56.4 mm,









respectively. Spawning events can be influenced by many factors, including gamete ripeness,

food supply and water conditions, but is typically triggered by seasonal changes in temperature

and can differ throughout the hard clam's geographical range (Eversole 2001) and between

brood stock strains (Knaub & Eversole 1988). Histology was performed on sixteen diploid

clams from group C at the time that they were collected in November 2006. Two of unknown

sex were either spent or in stage 0 to 1, six were in stage five or just prior to spawning and eight

were in active emission, stages 6 to 8 (S. Laramore, Harbor Branch Oceanogr. Inst., pers.

comm.). There was a three month period between when the histology was performed and the

start of the experiment, so the histological state of the clams just prior to the start of the

experiment was unknown.

Eversole et al. (1996) found that triploids do not have a significant growth advantage over

diploids until after the diploids have undergone two spawning events. If that is the case, and the

diploid clams used in my study had spawned once, at most, then there may be no basis for

expecting greater triploid survival in my experiment. Considering the timing of spring spawning

events, followed by summer stressor events, it would be beneficial to try to induce spawning for

both diploid and triploid groups immediately prior to running an experiment.

In addition to examining differences between triploid and diploid clams, this is the first

laboratory study to examine the effects of multiple stressors of salinity and dissolved oxygen on

M. mercenaria survival when combined with the high temperatures reached during Florida

summers. At higher temperatures, mortalities do not occur unless there is at least on additional

stressor present, such as low salinity or low dissolved oxygen levels. High and normal salinities

and high temperature at normal dissolved oxygen levels are probably not causing mortalities in

the field.









I also made observations of clam behavior that have important implications. For example,

while high temperature and low dissolved oxygen treatments did not appear to affect valve

movement, clams closed their valves in response to salinities of 10 ppt. Clams at this salinity did

not appear to be siphoning, and no burial activity occurred, suggesting that they were undergoing

anaerobic respiration. Clams remained closed between four and eight days and eventually died.

As a result of valve closure, hypoxia would not have had an effect until after clams began gaping

prior to mortality, which typically occurred within 24 hours of first observed gaping behavior.

The only study to look at complete and sustained valve closure, found that hard clams could

remain closed for up to 18 days at temperatures of 1 to 60C (Loosanoff 1939). At higher

temperatures of 15 to 220C, Chanley (1957) found that juvenile hard clams (10 to 21.5 mm SL)

exposed to 10 ppt salinity could survive for 28 days with no mortalities, with 50% mortality

occurring on day 41, while seed clams (1.8 to 3.6 mm SL) exhibited 100% mortality within 15

days. This study indicates that at high summer temperatures, sustained low salinities can be

lethal to adult hard clams within 4 days with a potential for complete crop losses within 8 days.

This may be important for future management of freshwater inputs into these estuaries during

summer months.

There is limited information in the literature on the effects of higher salinities on juvenile

and adult hard clams (Grizzle et al. 2001). Hamwi (1969) found the upper salinity limit for a

detectable pumping rate of acclimated clams to be 36 ppt at 250C. In a larval study, Davis

(1958) found that hard clam larvae did not develop in salinities above 32.5 ppt. This study found

that high salinity of 40 ppt, and normoxia had little or no impact on adult clam survival, siphon

extension or burial activity, it did not address the physiological aspects of pumping rates or

oxygen uptake.









Burial rates decreased over the duration of the experiment in the 25 ppt hypoxia and 40 ppt

hypoxia treatments, treatment in which high subsequent mortalities occurred, indicating a sub-

lethal effect of hypoxia. This suggests that clams planted during poor conditions may take

longer to bury in the sediment leaving them vulnerable to predation (Doering 1982).

Results of my experiments do not adequately explain summer mortalities in the field. It

may be that fluctuations in the environment, particularly of salinity, may be more physiologically

stressful than static conditions due to the amount of adjustment in physiological functions,

particularly osmotic regulation. Compounding the factors that I examined, there may be an

effect of phytoplankton availability and feeding rates during stressor events. If pumping rates

decrease outside of optimal physiological ranges, hard clam feeding rates will decrease as well

(Hamwi 1969). In addition, Charlotte Harbor typically experiences several red tide events

(Karina brevia) during the summer months, which may further increase the physiological stress

of clams already experiencing high temperatures, fluctuating salinities and low dissolved oxygen

events.

Does triploidy have the potential to improve hard clam culture in the state of Florida?

Results of this experiment suggest that triploidy does not increase the overall survival of M

mercenaria during extreme environmental conditions. However there was an advantage of

triploidy in the 25 ppt hypoxia treatment, a scenario that is more likely than others to occur on a

regular basis in the field. Additional avenues of research could help to clarify the benefit of

triploidy. Other experiments within this study will address survival under aquaculture conditions

in two field experiments, survival of seed clams during extreme environmental conditions in a

laboratory challenge, and differences in scope for growth of diploid and triploid hard clams.









These additional experiments may help clarify the potential of triploidy to improve hard clam

culture on the West coast of Florida.

There are other potential benefits to triploidy, aside from enhanced growth and survival,

including aquaculture of non-native species and an increased glycogen content. Sterility, in

addition to potentially enhancing growth, can ensure that non-native organisms are not

reproducing. Non-native species can affect natural populations of bivalves in two ways; 1)

through competition with other species for resources and 2) through hybridization with native

congeneric species (Arnold 2004, Beaumont and Fairbrother 1991). Sterility may also result in

enhanced taste. Bivalves, including M. mercenaria store their energy as glycogen, which

becomes depleted during the spawning season. Triploids divert little or no energy to spawning,

potentially resulting in a sweeter tasting clam since glycogen supplies are not depleted. In a

study by Allen and Downing (1991), consumers and oyster growers rated triploid oysters higher

in taste, texture and overall preference over control diploids, which they attribute to an increase

in glycogen storage in triploids along with lack of gonadal material, which negatively affects

texture and firmness.









APPENDIX
WATER QUALITY DATA

Table A-1. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 10 ppt, hypoxia.
Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Standard
Error


1 Temperature (C) 31.9 31.4 32.7 0.10
8 Temperature (C) 32.0 30.7 32.9 0.17
18 Temperature (C) 31.9 30.7 33.3 0.21
23 Temperature (C) 32.8 31.6 33.7 0.19

1 Salinity (ppt) 10.5 10.1 10.9 0.06
8 Salinity (ppt) 10.5 10.0 11.0 0.07
18 Salinity (ppt) 10.4 9.8 10.9 0.10
23 Salinity (ppt) 10.3 10.0 10.5 0.06

1 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 1.7 0.2 5.2 0.40
8 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 1.6 0.4 4.8 0.28
18 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L-) 2.0 0.2 5.8 0.53
23 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 1.0 0.1 5.1 0.42

1 % Dissolved Oxygen 16.6 3.7 29.8 4.16
8 % Dissolved Oxygen 17.2 5.4 28.7 2.46
18 % Dissolved Oxygen 6.1 2.7 11.4 1.37
23 % Dissolved Oxygen 6.1 2.0 13.5 2.14

1 Ammonia (ppm) 1.7 0.1 4.3 0.46
8 Ammonia (ppm) 2.4 0.1 4.1 0.49
18 Ammonia (ppm) 1.9 0.7 3.0 0.43
23 Ammonia (ppm) 2.8 0.5 6.1 0.89

1 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.1 0.2 0.02
8 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.0 0.4 0.04
18 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.1 0.3 0.03
23 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.1 0.4 0.04










Table A-2. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 10 ppt, normoxia.
Standard
Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Error
3 Temperature (C) 32.2 31.5 32.7 0.12
7 Temperature (C) 32.3 31.5 32.9 0.11
17 Temperature (C) 32.7 31.4 33.3 0.18
19 Temperature (C) 32.2 31.2 33.6 0.18

3 Salinity (ppt) 10.9 10.3 11.6 0.10
7 Salinity (ppt) 10.4 9.6 10.9 0.08
17 Salinity (ppt) 11.0 10.5 11.6 0.10
19 Salinity (ppt) 10.7 10.3 11.2 0.07

3 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 6.4 5.1 7.0 0.13
7 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 6.4 5.2 7.4 0.13
17 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 6.2 5.8 6.6 0.06
19 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 6.3 5.3 6.8 0.11

3 % Dissolved Oxygen 89.5 74.3 98.7 3.22
7 % Dissolved Oxygen 88.7 74.3 93.7 2.24
17 % Dissolved Oxygen 90.2 86.6 93.5 0.93
19 % Dissolved Oxygen 89.2 77.5 96.3 2.10

3 Ammonia (ppm) 1.7 0.2 4.2 0.45
7 Ammonia (ppm) 2.1 0.8 4.8 0.48
17 Ammonia (ppm) 2.2 0.9 4.6 0.55
19 Ammonia (ppm) 2.2 0.3 4.9 0.63

3 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.03
7 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.1 0.3 0.03
17 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.0 0.7 0.10
19 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.1 0.4 0.04










Table A-3. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 25 ppt, hypoxia.
Standard
Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Error


4 Temperature ("C) 31.9 29.9 33.0 0.09
11 Temperature (C) 32.6 31.3 33.7 0.10
14 Temperature (C) 32.2 31.1 33.7 0.06
24 Temperature (C) 32.0 30.0 33.5 0.11

4 Salinity (ppt) 25.4 24.2 26.8 0.08
11 Salinity (ppt) 25.2 24.4 26.7 0.08
14 Salinity (ppt) 25.6 24.9 27.0 0.07
24 Salinity (ppt) 25.6 24.5 27.2 0.09

4 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 0.7 0.3 2.5 0.06
11 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 0.8 0.2 5.2 0.14
14 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 0.7 0.2 4.7 0.13
24 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 0.8 0.2 4.8 0.12

4 % Dissolved Oxygen 9.5 4.9 18.6 0.61
11 % Dissolved Oxygen 9.6 3.5 42.0 1.17
14 % Dissolved Oxygen 7.6 3.3 32.6 0.83
24 % Dissolved Oxygen 9.3 3.4 32.6 1.15

4 Ammonia (ppm) 0.7 0.0 2.4 0.15
11 Ammonia (ppm) 0.8 0.0 2.0 0.13
14 Ammonia (ppm) 1.0 0.0 2.3 0.17
24 Ammonia (ppm) 0.7 0.0 2.9 0.16

4 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01
11 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.2 0.01
14 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.2 0.01
24 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01










Table A-4. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 25 ppt, normoxia.
Standard
Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Error


5 Temperature ("C) 32.3 30.7 33.9 0.10
9 Temperature (C) 32.3 31.5 33.0 0.05
13 Temperature (C) 32.4 31.2 34.2 0.10
20 Temperature (C) 31.9 30.9 32.5 0.05

5 Salinity (ppt) 25.2 23.1 26.5 0.10
9 Salinity (ppt) 25.3 24.5 26.8 0.08
13 Salinity (ppt) 25.3 22.5 27.2 0.13
20 Salinity (ppt) 25.6 24.0 27.2 0.11

5 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 6.0 5.5 6.5 0.04
9 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 6.1 5.6 6.5 0.03
13 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 6.0 5.6 6.5 0.03
20 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L-) 6.1 5.5 6.5 0.04

5 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.1 85.9 100.8 0.60
9 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.2 88.7 101.8 0.56
13 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.5 89.7 102.3 0.53
20 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.2 86.2 102.1 0.62

5 Ammonia (ppm) 0.6 0.0 2.1 0.12
9 Ammonia (ppm) 1.0 0.0 2.4 0.13
13 Ammonia (ppm) 0.8 0.0 2.9 0.15
20 Ammonia (ppm) 0.7 0.0 1.9 0.14

5 Nitrite (ppm) 0.2 0.1 0.3 0.01
9 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01
13 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.4 0.02
20 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.02










Table A-5. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 40 ppt, hypoxia.
Standard
Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Error


6 Temperature ("C) 32.0 29.8 33.3 0.09
10 Temperature (C) 32.0 29.5 32.9 0.09
16 Temperature (C) 32.7 31.3 33.7 0.09
22 Temperature (C) 32.2 31.2 33.4 0.07

6 Salinity (ppt) 40.2 37.7 42.0 0.15
10 Salinity (ppt) 40.1 37.6 41.9 0.14
16 Salinity (ppt) 40.4 37.9 42.4 0.19
22 Salinity (ppt) 40.5 37.3 42.5 0.17

6 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 0.8 0.2 3.8 0.12
10 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 1.0 0.3 4.5 0.13
16 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 0.6 0.1 3.7 0.10
22 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 0.7 0.2 4.5 0.10

6 % Dissolved Oxygen 9.7 3.7 34.6 1.20
10 % Dissolved Oxygen 13.1 4.3 47.9 1.36
16 % Dissolved Oxygen 6.9 2.4 25.8 0.85
22 % Dissolved Oxygen 10.5 3.2 31.9 0.95

6 Ammonia (ppm) 0.9 0.0 2.4 0.16
10 Ammonia (ppm) 0.9 0.0 1.7 0.11
16 Ammonia (ppm) 1.2 0.0 3.4 0.19
22 Ammonia (ppm) 0.9 0.0 2.5 0.15

6 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01
10 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01
16 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.02
22 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01










Table A-6. Average water quality values for tanks in treatment 40 ppt, normoxia.
Standard
Tank # Water Quality Value Average Minimum Maximum Error


2 Temperature ("C) 31.9 30.4 32.8 0.07
12 Temperature (C) 32.0 30.5 32.6 0.08
15 Temperature (C) 32.5 30.8 34.2 0.10
21 Temperature (C) 32.5 31.3 34.0 0.10

2 Salinity (ppt) 40.1 37.5 41.6 0.14
12 Salinity (ppt) 40.6 38.1 42.6 0.15
15 Salinity (ppt) 40.3 38.3 42.2 0.14
21 Salinity (ppt) 40.2 36.4 43.3 0.25

2 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 5.6 5.1 6.1 0.03
12 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 5.6 5.0 5.9 0.03
15 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 5.6 5.1 6.1 0.03
21 Dissolved Oxygen (mg-L1) 5.5 4.9 6.1 0.04

2 % Dissolved Oxygen 94.3 87.4 103.8 0.60
12 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.3 79.8 102.0 0.64
15 % Dissolved Oxygen 95.6 88.7 102.8 0.52
21 % Dissolved Oxygen 94.8 83.7 102.7 0.63

2 Ammonia (ppm) 0.7 0.0 1.8 0.12
12 Ammonia (ppm) 0.8 0.0 2.2 0.13
15 Ammonia (ppm) 0.8 0.0 2.3 0.14
21 Ammonia (ppm) 0.9 0.0 3.5 0.19

2 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.1 0.3 0.01
12 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.2 0.01
15 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.2 0.01
21 Nitrite (ppm) 0.1 0.0 0.3 0.01









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Allen, S. K., & S. L. Downing. 1991. Consumers and "experts" alike prefer the taste of sterile
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Arnold, W. S., M. W. White, H. A. Norris & M. E. Berrigan. 2000. Hard clam (Mercenaria spp.)
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Baker, S. M., P. Baker, D. Heuberger & L. N. Sturmer. 2005. Short-term effects of rapid salinity
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Baker, S. M., D. Heuberger, E. Phlips & L. Sturmer. 2002. Water quality and its role on hard
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Beaumont, A. R. & J. E. Fairbrother. 1991. Ploidy manipulation in molluscan shellfish: A
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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

Elise Ann Hoover was born in Janesville, Wisconsin, on March 7th 1977. She moved with

her parents to Gainesville, Florida, in 1981 and has been a resident since that time. Yearly trips

to Crescent Beach on the east coast of Florida and an introduction to scuba diving cemented her

love of the ocean and a desire to study in a related field. She received her BS in environmental

science from the University of Florida in May of 2000. Elise went on to teach laboratory

sections for Invertebrate Zoology and Marine Biology with Dr. Frank Maturo at the University

of Florida, followed by identification of invertebrates with an environmental consulting firm.

She returned to the University of Florida to pursue a master's degree in the spring of 2004 and

will receive her degree in the spring of 2007.