Data portal

Shellfish Monitor

Which shellfish live in the Dutch coastal waters? What are the population sizes, biomasses and where exactly are they? How do certain species develop? Wageningen Marine Research can map the population size and distribution of Dutch shellfish species for you. The data from our annual surveys are made available to you in a user-friendly way via the Shellfish Monitor.

Shellfish cultivators use this kind of information for their operational management. Policy makers are also interested in the data. For example, to estimate the consequences of sand nourishment on beaches or foreshores for shellfish fauna.

The outside world often does not know that we register more than just cockles and mussels, and have done so for several decades. Through the Shellfish Monitor, we can finally make information on the distribution and development of many shellfish species accessible to every interested party.
Karin Troost, shellfish researcher

We support you in finding answers

Wageningen Marine Research presents its long-term data collections on the population development of these shellfish in five sub-maps.

Within each monitor, you can easily view the distribution and population development of various species of shellfish (density and biomass) in the saline Dutch coastal waters. You can select the species you want and scroll through the individual years.

Shellfish Surveys

In order to determine how much fishing is permitted, it is necessary to know what the stock sizes of shellfish are in the Dutch coastal waters. That is why our researchers have been mapping the current size of the stocks of commercially interesting species and their distribution every year since 1990. These inventories are primarily focused on cockles (Cerastoderma edule), mussels (Mytilus edulis), Atlantic jackknife clam (Ensis leei), cut through shell (Spisula subtruncata) and Pacific oyster (Crassostrea gigas). All other species of shellfish, crabs and echinoderms found are also recorded.

Most shellfish surveys are part of the Statutory Research Tasks (WOT) for fisheries, and are carried out annually on behalf of the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality. The inventory carried out in the sublittoral part of the Wadden Sea is commissioned by the Producers Organisation of Dutch Mussel Culture.

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