Polymesoda spp., which represent bivalves in the mangrove ecosystem, inhabit the mangrove forests of the Indo-Pacific region. They tend not to be broadly distributed across zones within the mangrove forest, but are instead typically encountered in the mesozone. We conducted field rearing experiments on four plots which were set across a mangrove forest along the Urauchi River of Iriomote Island, from the seaward to landward sides, over a period of 10 months. We compared the survival rates of clams at these plots with different environment for four months. Salinity was also measured during the study period, and we established a correlation between survival rate and change in salinity of each plot. The survival rate of the plot in the mesozone was 90%, that of two plots which were positioned in the seaward zone of the mesozone was 40%, and that of the plot on the landward side was 0%. In plot 4, the ambient water of the bivalves was fresh water. The salinity of the seaward zone changed rapidly in one day, or the salinity of the ambient water surrounding the bivalves was high for a long period of time. In Plot 3, salinity change was gradual, and the average salinity was lower than in Plots 1 and 2. This study indicates that salinity level affects bivalve survival rate and that area similar the mesozone, where gradual salinity change and average salinity were neither too high nor too low, are suitable for these species.
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Vol. 34 • No. 3