Print ISSN: 0016-4139 Online ISSN: 2719-082X
Biofouling has been generally viewed as a negative issue affecting the culture of bivalves around the world. One significant impact of biofouling is the reduction of growth of affected species. To quantify its effect on scallops, meta-analytic techniques were employed using secondary data from best available published studies. Using the random effects model, the study was able to determine a significant reduction in the growth of fouled scallop by about 24%. However, subgroup analysis revealed that the effect of biofouling on growth significantly varied depending on the type of fouling experienced by the scallops (Q=65.96, p<0.0001). Endobionts and fouling on net enclosures significantly reduced shell growth; however, growth reduction was not significant in epibiont-infested scallops. The underlying principle of the reduction in growth resulting from biofouling and its impact are discussed in this paper. The result of the study highlights the significant impact of biofouling that merits exploration of possible mitigating and control measures to address the possible impacts of biofouling for future scallop mariculture.