Assessment of the Population Dynamics, Spread and Management of Asian Clam (Corbicula fluminea), a new Irish Aquatic Invader

Short summary of the project

This PhD study will be an assessment of the status of the Asian clam in Ireland. This invasive freshwater shellfish was first discovered in Ireland in 2010. The research will include the assessment of the population dynamics, spread and management of the Asian Clam in Irish waters.

Description of the project suitable for inclusion in documentation to be sent to applicants

This PhD study will be an assessment of the status of the Asian clam in Ireland. This invasive freshwater shellfish was first discovered in Ireland in 2010. The research will include the assessment of the population dynamics, spread and management of the Asian Clam in Irish waters. The main objectives are to:

  1. Determine the status of Corbicula as an invader to Irish waters by undertaking population studies.
  2. Confirm the species of Corbicula using morphometric and genetic studies.
  3. Develop an identification index for different Corbicula species as a management tool.
  4. Examine all potential vectors of spread to develop a simple risk assessment model for water managers.
  5. Investigate methodologies to eradicate Corbicula from specific sections of open water (canal and lake).
  6. Produce peer-reviewed literature, conference posters and presentations, web-based information and an MSc/ PhD thesis.

This project will be financially supported by the President’s postgraduate bursary for two years (MSc); the applicant my also seek extra funding from other sources, e.g Local Authorities. Should the research meet the required standard, bursary support will be sought to develop the programme to a PhD level.

Profile of a suitable candidate

The student should meet the following standards: 2/1 Honours BSc or MSc in Environmental/ Biological Sciences.