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Volume 43 - Number 1 - 2008

Effects of culture density and shelter on growth and survival of juvenile spider crab, Maja brachydactyla (Balss, 1922)

Pedro Domingues1 y Javier Alaminos1


1IFAPA Centro Agua del Pino, Carretera Cartaya-Punta Umbría, s/n.21450 Cartaya, Huelva, España



The effects of culture density (11 and 50 spider crabs m-2, respectively) and shelter (presence or not of macro algae in the trays) on survival of 2 months old juvenile spider crabs (M. brachydactyla) were tested. All groups were fed boiled and frozen mussels (Mytilus sp.) ad libitum, during the entire experiment. After 60 days, in the experiment I, survival of spider crabs cultured at the lower density was 83.3±19.3%, significantly higher (P <0.05) compared to the ones cultured at the higher density, with a 14.3±5.8% survival. In the experiment II, survival of spider crabs in the presence / absence of macro algae (Ulva lactuca) as refuges, was not significantly different (P>0.05) (33.3±19.2% and 37.0±20.2%, respectively). The final density of spider crabs in all trays, after 60 days of experimentation, was similar to the lower density tested (11 spider crabs m-2, equivalent to 3 spider crabs m-2). This density seems to be appropriate for the culture of juvenile spider crab, in the defined culture conditions (T=20±2ºC, natural photoperiod corresponding to the months between September and March in a latitude of 37º 13'N, and salinity close to 35 ups). Growth rates in weight (g) and carapace length (mm), when feeding on boiled and frozen mussels were of 2.1±0.7% BW d-1, and of 0.6±0.3% BW d-1 respectively.

Key words: Culture, density, growth, Crustacea




1Laboratorio de Zooplancton, Instituto de Ciencias del Mar y Limnología,Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México. A. P. 70-305, 04510 México, D. F. México
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