To derive the characteristic parameters from the data, the software program MUSSEL was developed. Length-frequency data are divided into maximal three size classes by the program, and average lengths of each size class, and numbers of animals that belong to each class are computed. Length-weight relationships are computed using an allometric equation. Finally, the rate of change of average lengths and the course of the animal's weight is results from subsequent samples. The existence of a discrete reproduction characteristic is essential, otherwise random sampling from a population never would yield information on growth. Mussels reproduce once a year in spring, and the method of analysis is very well applicable. In this report, the underlying computation method is explained and documented. Emphasized is the proper use of a non-linear parameter estimation technique and the computation of the confidence of the derived parameter values.
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