Marine Biology

, Volume 147, Issue 5, pp 1165–1172 | Cite as

Muscling in on mussels: new insights into bivalve behaviour using vertebrate remote-sensing technology

  • Rory WilsonEmail author
  • Penpag Reuter
  • Martin Wahl
Research Article


The difficulty of studying marine endotherms has stimulated researchers wishing to quantify behaviour at sea to develop animal-attached remote-sensing technology that automatically records activity at all times, even when the study animal is far from land and deep underwater (see e.g. Naito 2004). Superficially, it would appear that such technology is unnecessary for more accessible animals, such as intertidal invertebrates, because they can generally be observed directly, either in the laboratory or in situ. However, problems of observation in imperfect conditions, observer bias, fatigue or simple inability to resolve behavioural events are little discussed even though they may profoundly affect the quality and interpretation of results.

In this note, we demonstrate how technology using the Hall effect, originally developed for studies on marine endotherms, may be used to elucidate and to quantify the behaviour of bivalves both in the laboratory and in the wild. To our...


Bivalve Blue Mussel Sensor Output Hall Sensor Shell Gape 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We would like to thank Mandy Kierspel for extensive help with the loggers, Henriette Dries, Stephanie Ismer and Nina Kriegisch for handling mussels and field assistance, and are particularly grateful to Vaccuumschmelze GmbH for help, as always, with the magnets.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Biological SciencesUniversity of Wales SwanseaSwanseaUK
  2. 2.Leibnitz Institut für MeereswissenschaftenKielGermany

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