Event Title

Investigating mitigation for sediment acidification in Burrard Inlet, BC, Canada to support First Nation shellfish managment

Presentation Abstract

Shellfish are an important ecological, economic, and cultural component of the Pacific Northwest (PNW). Shellfish provide critical ecosystem services, and the PNW shellfish aquaculture industry is growing, contributing to the economy and global food security. Shellfish have been a staple in the traditional diet and subsistence economy of coastal First Nations for thousands of years. Harvesting shellfish also provides a means of cultural transmission and cross-generational teachings. Ocean acidification threatens sensitive coastal and estuarine ecosystems. Calcifying organisms, such as bivalve shellfish, which inhabit these ecosystems, are particularly vulnerable to acidification as they require carbonate to produce their shells. Sediment acidification poses a potential threat to these important coastal species. Sediment conditions (e.g. porewater pH) may have disproportionate effects on shellfish growth and survival, compared to the overlying water column. Acidic sediments can cause shell dissolution in juveniles, increase mortality, and reduce population recruitment. Currently, shell hash is a large component of the substrate managed by First Nations mariculture practices and the aquaculture industry. Shell hash is incorporated in the substrate to increase recruitment and improve juvenile settlement. However, it is not known if the application of hash is an effective means of countering the effects of sediment acidification. Through a combination of field and lab studies, we are evaluating the efficacy of shell hash as a possible mitigation approach to counter the affects of sediment acidification in Burrard Inlet, BC, Canada. Burrard Inlet is a coastal estuarine system within the unceded territories of Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations, and surrounded by Greater Vancouver and Port Metro Vancouver (PMV). The application of this research will focus on First Nation governance, resource management, and shellfish habitat restoration efforts.

Session Title

Climate Change and Culturally Important Foods, Resources, and Places in the Salish Ecosystem

Conference Track

Climate Change and Ocean Acidification

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (2016 : Vancouver, B.C.)

Document Type

Event

Location

2016SSEC

Type of Presentation

Oral

Contributing Repository

Digital content made available by University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Rights

This resource is displayed for educational purposes only and may be subject to U.S. and international copyright laws. For more information about rights or obtaining copies of this resource, please contact University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA 98225-9103, USA (360-650-7534; heritage.resources@wwu.edu) and refer to the collection name and identifier. Any materials cited must be attributed to the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference Records, University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Type

Text

Language

English

Format

application/pdf

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Investigating mitigation for sediment acidification in Burrard Inlet, BC, Canada to support First Nation shellfish managment

2016SSEC

Shellfish are an important ecological, economic, and cultural component of the Pacific Northwest (PNW). Shellfish provide critical ecosystem services, and the PNW shellfish aquaculture industry is growing, contributing to the economy and global food security. Shellfish have been a staple in the traditional diet and subsistence economy of coastal First Nations for thousands of years. Harvesting shellfish also provides a means of cultural transmission and cross-generational teachings. Ocean acidification threatens sensitive coastal and estuarine ecosystems. Calcifying organisms, such as bivalve shellfish, which inhabit these ecosystems, are particularly vulnerable to acidification as they require carbonate to produce their shells. Sediment acidification poses a potential threat to these important coastal species. Sediment conditions (e.g. porewater pH) may have disproportionate effects on shellfish growth and survival, compared to the overlying water column. Acidic sediments can cause shell dissolution in juveniles, increase mortality, and reduce population recruitment. Currently, shell hash is a large component of the substrate managed by First Nations mariculture practices and the aquaculture industry. Shell hash is incorporated in the substrate to increase recruitment and improve juvenile settlement. However, it is not known if the application of hash is an effective means of countering the effects of sediment acidification. Through a combination of field and lab studies, we are evaluating the efficacy of shell hash as a possible mitigation approach to counter the affects of sediment acidification in Burrard Inlet, BC, Canada. Burrard Inlet is a coastal estuarine system within the unceded territories of Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations, and surrounded by Greater Vancouver and Port Metro Vancouver (PMV). The application of this research will focus on First Nation governance, resource management, and shellfish habitat restoration efforts.