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Influence of Pile Driving on the Clearance Rate of the Blue Mussel, Mytilus edulis (L.)

Lookup NU author(s): Ilaria Spiga, Dr Gary Caldwell



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of a conference proceedings (inc. abstract) that has been published in its final definitive form by Acoustical Society of America, 2016.

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Underwater pile driving is typically undertaken during construction of offshore oil and gas platforms andwind farms and harbours. These structures generally need solid foundations – provided by large steel piles– that are driven into the seabed. Impact pile driving generates water-borne pressure and particle motions,which propagate through the water column and the seabed. Few studies have investigated the potentialeffects of underwater noise stimuli on bivalves. In current study, the influence of impact pile driving onclearance rate of the blue mussel (Mytilus edulis) was investigated in a semi-open field experiment.An experimental pile driving setup was constructed using a pile-driver and a steel pile. Under controlledconditions, individual mussels were exposed to experimental pile driving and ambient conditions, withthe possibility to feed upon microalgae (Tetraselmis suecica). Mussels had significantly higher clearancerates during exposure to pile driving compared with individuals tested in ambient conditions. We suggestthat mussels under pile driving conditions moved from a physiologically maintenance state to activemetabolism to compensate for the stress caused by pile driving.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Spiga I, Caldwell GS, Bruintjes R

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: Fourth International Conference on the Effects of Noise on Aquatic Life

Year of Conference: 2016

Online publication date: 31/10/2016

Acceptance date: 24/09/2016

Date deposited: 04/11/2016

ISSN: 1939-800X

Publisher: Acoustical Society of America


DOI: 10.1121/2.0000277

Series Title: Proceedings of Meetings on Acoustics