10:1510:30 26. Jan 2023
10:1510:30 26. Jan 2023 iCal myOrganizer
Love your ocean

Is noble pen shell rushing to extinction?

The noble pen shell (Pinna nobilis) is an endemic Mediterranean bivalve and is one of the biggest bivalves on Earth – its shells can reach over 1m in length. It can be found from the surface to 60 m of depth. Mass mortality of the noble pen shell was first noticed at the eastern coast of Spain in 2016, from where it spread eastwards, all over the Mediterranean Sea. The mortality reached the Adriatic Sea in spring 2019 and was spread by sea-currents towards the north-west, completely devastating all the populations in its way. In most of the dying specimens the parasitic organism Haplosporidium pinnae were found, as were two species of pathogenic bacteria.

The author was a member in the Croatian team of the international project MERCES, which included successful transferring of the noble pen shells from risk areas to National Park Brijuni. He also participated in PinnaAdriaNet project, whose goal is pen shell spat collection and transfer to the Pula Aquarium where it is reared in sterilized seawater. The team has the best results four years consequently.