Deploying noble pen shell larvae collectors in Portlligat bay
Since the end of 2016 the population of noble pen shell (Pinna nobilis) on the Spanish coast has decreased dramatically due to the affectation produced by a new described species of parasite known as Haplosporidium pinnae, causing 99% mortality in the noble pen shells of the Spanish Mediterranean coast and has also spread to other areas of the Mediterranean.
The noble pen shell is a bivalve mollusc endemic to the Mediterranean Sea. It can be found in the seagrass meadows, especially those of Posidonia (Posidonia oceanica), and can measure more than 1 meter in length, being considered the most emblematic molluscs of the Mediterranean.
Several conservation actions were carried out to help the conservation of the species during th epidemic outbreak. Actions were conducted all along the spanish mediterranean and in specifically with the population of Cap de Creus national Park
The 3 actions that were carried out at that time consisted of
1) Rescue of individuals from Portlligat Bay (Cadaqués) and their transfer to different research centres and aquariums.
2) Installation of protective cages for noble pen shells to prevent infected and sick individuals from being eaten by crustaceans and fish.
3) Installation of noble pen shell larvae collectors.