Atantic surfclams are filterfeeding bivalves that live in sandy sediments along the northeast coast of the USA. After the adult clams spawn, their larvae float along ocean currents, moving up and down in the water column seeking food and optimal water temperatures. As the larvae grow heavier, they settle to the bottom where they spend the rest of their lives burrowed in the sandy bottom filtering water for food. The extent of their range in the southern end of their range is limited by water temperatures.
Modeling Clams in the Ocean
Our team members are developing a Mid Atlantic surfclam model as part of our multi-disciplinary study looking at adaptation to climate change in a human-natural coupled system. In its present form, the model combines a hydrodynamic model for the Middle Atlantic Bight – a coastal region running from Massachusetts to North Carolina — with an individual-based sub-model for surfclam larvae and a sub-model for adult clams. The hydrodynamic core for the model is the Regional Ocean Modeling System (ROMS), in use world-wide for both basic research and real-time applications.
Click on the slide show below to see examples of our results. [slide show coming soon]