An environmentally based growth model that uses finite difference calculus with maximum likelihood method: its application to the brackish water bivalve Corbicula japonica in Lake Abashiri, Japan


Baba, Katsuhisa, Toshifumi Kawajiri, Yasuhiro Kuwahara, and Shigeru Nakao
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We present a growth analysis model that combines large amounts of environmental data with limited amounts of biological data and apply it to Corbicula japonica. The model uses the maximum-likelihood method with the Akaike information criterion, which provides an objective criterion for model selection. An adequate distribution for describing a single cohort is selected from available probability density functions, which are expressed by location and scale parameters. Daily relative increase rates of the location parameter are expressed by a multivariate logistic function with environmental factors for each day and categorical variables indicating animal ages as independent variables. Daily relative increase rates of the scale parameter are expressed by an equation describing the relationship with the daily relative increase rate of the location parameter. Corbicula japonica grows to a modal shell length of 0.7 mm during the first year in Lake Abashiri. Compared with the attainable maximum size of about 30 mm, the growth of juveniles is extremely slow because their growth is less susceptible to environmental factors until the second winter. The extremely slow growth in Lake Abashiri could be a geographical genetic variation within C. japonica.