An invasive mussel species has multiplied in the Gulf of Riga

An invasive mussel species has multiplied in the Gulf of Riga
An invasive mussel species has multiplied in the Gulf of Riga
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During the research planned in the “LIFE REEF” project, a large number of invasive Atlantic clams were found in the Gulf of Riga, LETA agency was informed by the coordinator of the “LIFE REEF” project of the Nature Protection Board (DAP), Gunta Gabrāne.

Until now, Atlantic clams were found only in open waters in Latvia – in the port of Liepāja and Pāvilost. Early detection and investigation of invasive species allows for faster response and helps reduce potential ecological damage to native species.

Solvita Strāķe, a researcher at the Latvian Institute of Hydroecology, a partner of the “LIFE REEF” project, explains that this species was first detected in European waters in 2005 in Antwerp, Belgium. Most likely, it traveled to Latvia by ship.

The presence of mussels in the Gulf of Riga raises concerns about their possible impact on the local ecosystem, potentially affecting nutrient cycles in the bay. Although the Atlantic clam plays a role in filtering the water and providing habitats for other organisms, their arrival can upset the delicate balance of the Gulf of Riga.

In addition, as invasive species, they can compete with native mussels for food resources. This discovery encourages additional monitoring and research of marine invasive species in order to manage the spread of invasive species and protect the marine ecosystem, emphasizes Strāķe.


The article is in Latvian

Latvia

Tags: invasive mussel species multiplied Gulf Riga

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