Invasive Species Compendium

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Abstract

Establishment and spread of Manila clam (Ruditapes philippinarum (A. Adams and Reeve)) (Mollusca: Veneridae) in Strangford Lough, Co. Down.

Abstract

This paper describes the establishment and spread of Manila Clam (Ruditapes philippinarum) in Strangford Lough, Co. Down. On 20 December 2020, a large number of Ruditapes were encountered on a muddy gravel shore with boulders at Rough Island, Comber River Estuary, Strangford Lough. Internally, many specimens had a deep purple colouration around the main muscle scars which was a distinct feature of R. philippinarum. There is a big possibility that someone introduced the species in Strangford but there is not a clear record of it. What is clear is that the species has become established and is spreading rapidly. Adults were found in February and March 2021 over a wide area from Greyabbey Bay to the upper Comber River. Abundant fresh dead shells were seen, mortality probably caused by severe frosts in February 2021.