Líffræðifélag Íslands - biologia.is
Líffræðiráðstefnan 2023

A new mollusc in town: Ensis terranovensis invades Iceland

Höfundar / Authors: Sindri Gíslason (1), Karl Gunnarsson (2), Sæmundur Sveinsson (3), Davíð Gíslason (3), Hilmar Malmquist (4), Ólafur Páll Jónsson (1), Joana Micael (1)

Starfsvettvangur / Affiliations: 1. Náttúrustofa Suðvesturlands , 2. Hafrannsóknastofnun, 3. Matís, 4. Náttúruminjasafn Íslands

Kynnir / Presenter: Sindri Gíslason

In 2019, the razor clam Ensis terranovensis Vierna & Martínez-Lage, 2012 (Mollusca; Pharidae) was discovered in Icelandic waters for the first time. This marks the first instance of the species being found beyond its natural range on the eastern coast of North America. It is believed that E. terranovensis was transported to Iceland as larvae in ballast water, leading to a self-sustaining population on the southwestern coast of Iceland.
This study aims to provide information about this fairly unknown species and investigate its recent colonization in Icelandic waters. This involves assessing the known distribution of the species, measuring its density at selected sites, and analyzing the size distributions of individuals. Field surveys were conducted across various regions of Icelandic waters, revealing that E. terranovensis is mainly distributed along the southwestern coast of Iceland. Furthermore, the densities of E. terranovensis were measured monthly at two distinct locations over a year, providing valuable insights into the species' establishment and potential habitat preferences within Icelandic waters.
The findings of this study contribute to our understanding of the newly colonized Ensis terranovensis population in Icelandic waters. By documenting its life history traits, this research provides a foundation for future ecological studies and management efforts.