Priming the larval pump: resurgence of bay scallop recruitment following initiation of intensive restoration efforts

  • Published source details Tettelbach S., Peterson B., Carroll J., Hughes S., Bonal D., Weinstock A., Europe J., Furman B. & Smith C. (2013) Priming the larval pump: resurgence of bay scallop recruitment following initiation of intensive restoration efforts. Marine Ecology Progress Series, 478, 153-172.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Transplant/release captive-bred or hatchery-reared species - Transplant/release molluscs

Action Link
Subtidal Benthic Invertebrate Conservation
  1. Transplant/release captive-bred or hatchery-reared species - Transplant/release molluscs

    A replicated, before-and-after study in 2005–2010 of 23 sites across five areas of in Peconic Bays, North Atlantic Ocean, New York, USA (Tettelbach et al. 2013 - same expeimental set-up as Tettelbach et al. 2015) found that over four years after initiating transplantation of hatchery-reared bay scallop Argopecten irradians irradians, larval recruitment increased across all areas. Larval recruitment across all five areas was higher after restoration (2010: 29–118 spat/collector/day), compared to before (2005: 2–10 spat/collector/day), including two areas where no scallops had been transplanted, suggesting larval transport from restored sites to unrestored sites. A restoration programme aimed to increase scallop reproductive success was initiated in 2006 by transplanting several millions of hatchery-reared bay scallops in nets or directly on the seabed (100–200 scallops/m2; see paper for details). Larval recruitment was monitored at 23 sites across five embayments (three with transplanted scallops, two nearby without to assess larval transport) for 6 years: 2005–2006 (before intensive restoration) and 2007–2010 (after commencement of intensive restoration). Spat collectors were deployed (3/site) at 1–6 m average depth before 1st June to sample bay scallop larvae. A second set of collectors was deployed three weeks later. Every three weeks thereafter, a new set of collectors replaced those that had been in the water for six weeks. After retrieval, all scallops in the spat collectors were counted and shell heights were measured.

    (Summarised by: Anaëlle Lemasson & Laura Pettit)

Output references
What Works 2021 cover

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More about What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read the latest volume: Volume 21

Go to the CE Journal

Discover more on our blog

Our blog contains the latest news and updates from the Conservation Evidence team, the Conservation Evidence Journal, and our global partners in evidence-based conservation.

Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape ProgrammeRed List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Mauritian Wildlife Supporting Conservation Leaders
Sustainability Dashboard National Biodiversity Network Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Bat Conservation InternationalPeople trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust