Event Title

Use of green sea urchins (Stroglocentrotus droebachiensis) as a biocontrol for fouling on aquaculture net pens in British Columbia

Description

Biofouling in the aquaculture industry is an expensive problem, requiring toxic chemical treatments and manual cleaning. It is a problem that negatively impacts fish by occluding net openings, thereby reducing water flow and stressing stocks, as well as physically damaging nets. However, many invertebrates feed on and remove sessile fouling organisms from substrata. Biocontrol aims to add these natural grazers to aquaculture systems to control fouling. Ideally the biocontrol is also exploited so that the method becomes a form of polyculture. This study aims to determine the feasibility of using green sea urchins (Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis) as a biocontrol in sablefish net pens. The experiment involved immersing sample nets at several depths with varying urchin densities. The efficacy of urchins as biocontrols was measured using dry-weight, and remote sensing techniques were used to determine percent net occlusion. The results will be used to determine optimal carrying capacity, as well as minimum and maximum densities for the use of green sea urchins as biocontrols on net pens at commercial scales.

Start Date

8-3-2008 8:00 AM

End Date

8-3-2008 5:00 PM

Subject - LCSH

Green sea urchin--British Columbia; Aquaculture industry--British Columbia; Fouling; Fish culture--British Columbia; Sablefish--British Columbia

Geographic Coverage

British Columbia

Genre/Form

Abstracts

Session

Resource Management: Coastal British Columbia

Rights

Copying of this document in whole or in part is allowable only for scholarly purposes. It is understood, however, that any copying or publication of this document for commercial purposes, or for financial gain, shall not be allowed without the author's written permission.

Digital Format

application/pdf

Language

English

Type

event

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Mar 8th, 8:00 AM Mar 8th, 5:00 PM

Use of green sea urchins (Stroglocentrotus droebachiensis) as a biocontrol for fouling on aquaculture net pens in British Columbia

Biofouling in the aquaculture industry is an expensive problem, requiring toxic chemical treatments and manual cleaning. It is a problem that negatively impacts fish by occluding net openings, thereby reducing water flow and stressing stocks, as well as physically damaging nets. However, many invertebrates feed on and remove sessile fouling organisms from substrata. Biocontrol aims to add these natural grazers to aquaculture systems to control fouling. Ideally the biocontrol is also exploited so that the method becomes a form of polyculture. This study aims to determine the feasibility of using green sea urchins (Strongylocentrotus droebachiensis) as a biocontrol in sablefish net pens. The experiment involved immersing sample nets at several depths with varying urchin densities. The efficacy of urchins as biocontrols was measured using dry-weight, and remote sensing techniques were used to determine percent net occlusion. The results will be used to determine optimal carrying capacity, as well as minimum and maximum densities for the use of green sea urchins as biocontrols on net pens at commercial scales.