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Stock assessment, spatial distribution and biological parameters of the clam Venerupis decussata along the Sfax coasts (Tunisia, Central Mediterranean)

  • Abdelkarim Derbali (a1), Aymen Hadj Taieb (a1), Wassim Kammoun (a1), Jaouadi Gouirah (a1), Amira Wannes-Ghorbel (a1), Nedra Zamouri-Langar (a1), Mohamed Ghorbel (a1) and Othman Jarboui (a1)...

Abstract

The grooved carpet shell Venerupis decussata (=Ruditapes decussatus) (Linnaeus, 1758) is a Mediterranean autochthonous species that in Tunisia is heavily harvested from natural populations. It represents one of the important economic issues, especially in terms of employment and the trade balances of the country via its exportation. Despite its economic value, no studies have been carried out about the spread of this mollusc. Thus the status of this species is still poorly known and there is a knowledge gap about its stocks assessment. This study aimed to investigate the distribution, abundance and population structure of the carpet shell clam in Sfax coastal areas. In terms of geographic occupation, maps of the population distribution were drawn. The results showed a scattered distribution pattern of the species according to location ranging between 0 and 152 ind m−2. The consequence was a remarkable biomass which represented 891 tonnes of total fresh weight and high abundance levels reaching over 261.7 ± 84.2 million individuals estimated in the area of 4182 hectares. The distribution of the species has also been investigated in consideration with the size which varied markedly according to location, the shell length ranged between 2 and 41 mm. The overall sex ratio (F:M) was 1:1.17, which was significantly different from parity (1:1). The size at which 50% of the population reached maturity was 24.08 and 24.76 mm shell length for males and females, respectively. Findings of the current study suggest that V. decussata proliferates along southern Tunisian coasts.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence should be addressed to:A. Derbali, Institut National des Sciences et Technologies de la Mer (INSTM), Sfax, Tunisia email: derbali10@gmail.com, derbali09@yahoo.fr

References

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Keywords

Stock assessment, spatial distribution and biological parameters of the clam Venerupis decussata along the Sfax coasts (Tunisia, Central Mediterranean)

  • Abdelkarim Derbali (a1), Aymen Hadj Taieb (a1), Wassim Kammoun (a1), Jaouadi Gouirah (a1), Amira Wannes-Ghorbel (a1), Nedra Zamouri-Langar (a1), Mohamed Ghorbel (a1) and Othman Jarboui (a1)...

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