Mussel culture in the Netherlands relies on the availability of natural seed mussels. Seeds are mainly harvested from natural seedbeds in the Waddenzee and transferred to culture lots for grow-out. In order to develop sustainable mussel culture, it is important to focus on harvesting unstable seedbeds. The stability of mussel seedbeds depends on several factors including predation by benthic fauna.
Research will focus on whether stability of a mussel seedbed can be predicted by quantifying predator abundance. In order to predict stability, insight will also be acquired on physical factors and factors like seedbed structure, seed density and seed quality.