Giant mussel rescue mission
By Emma Randle Central Government has approved the “emergency rescue” of 215 examples of giant mussels from Almería waters to prevent the species being wiped out by disease. Earlier this year the regional government found massive numbers of the molluscs were dying off the shores of the province due to the rise in a type of ocean parasite. The rescued specimens will be taken to special centres where they will be safe from infection and also provide a breeding ground for future repopulation.
The giant mussel is native to the Mediterranean and can grow to be up to 120 cm long. It can live for up to 50 years, mostly in deep sea posidonia meadows. It is considered an essential element in the marine ecosystem.
Meanwhile, a rise in the temperature of the Alboran Sea is threatening coral colonies, according to scientists. In response, conservationists have started a year-long study aimed at preventing their disappearance.
Giant mussels are at risk of extinction in the province