Science Serving Maryland's Coasts

Research Publications: UM-SG-RS-2005-26


Resistance of dermo in eastern oysters, Crassostrea virginica (Gmelin), of North Carolina but not Chesapeake Bay heritage.




Brown, BL; Butt, AJ; Shelton, SW; Meritt, D; Paynter, KT


Aquaculture Research 36(14):1391-1399




Growth, intensity of Perkinsus marinus (Levine) infection, and survival of synchronously spawned North Carolina (NC) and Chesapeake Bay-heritage (CB) oysters, Crassostrea virginica (Gmelin) were evaluated under standard tray culture conditions at several sites in both regions (Wye River, Maryland; Mobjack Bay, Virginia; Pamlico River, NC and Bogue Banks, NC). Infection prevalence reached 100% in oysters held at all high- and moderate-salinity sites, at which time the CB strain ceased to grow. Shortly after growth ceased, CB oysters exhibited mortality that rapidly progressed to 100%. Unlike the CB strain, growth continued in the NC strain despite high P. marinus prevalence. When mortality did occur in the NC strain, at a reduced rate of 37-40%, it was associated with higher intensity of P. marinus than the infection intensity correlated with death of CB oysters. At the low-salinity site in NC, P. marinus infection persisted at low weighted prevalence throughout the latter portion of the culture period but was not associated with mortality of either strain. These trends in growth and disease resistance for the two strains demonstrate that aquaculture performance is related to the level of disease resistance in oyster strains, salinity of water in growing areas and virulence of P. marinus.

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