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Atlantic salmon egg research



A series of experiments are planned to be conducted at the Omega Salmon Group Freshwater Division hatchery near Fanny Bay, at the Big Qualicum hatchery, and at the Pacific Biological Station (PBS) that will focus on gamete collection, storage, fertilization, incubation, and egg sensitivity to mechanical shock and iodine disinfection. The tests will be designed to determine factors that affect egg and larval development survival and growth. The main factor that will be controlled and tested is temperature (both during gamete handling and storage and during egg incubation). From the results, "safe" criteria will be determined for the various stages of egg and larval development. In addition, egg and larval samples from a range of temperature exposures will be analysed to determine development rates. From these samples, data will be mathematically modelled for implementation into a computer program called WinSIRP that has been developed for Pacific salmon for fish culturists to predict development rates in response to temperature.

Egg sensitivity in Pacific salmon species has been thoroughly studied at PBS and can result in poor egg survival if ignored. Using the standardized methods developed for measuring Pacific salmon egg sensitivity, similar data will be obtained for Atlantic salmon eggs. The results will be used to determine if current egg handling procedures need to be changed to improve egg survival. In addition, the standard iodine disinfection procedure used for Atlantic salmon eggs will be evaluated and tested in light of the egg sensitivity test results to ensure that eggs are not adversely affected.

Program Name

Aquaculture Collaborative Research and Development Program (ACRDP)


2002 - 2004


Pacific: Strait of Georgia

Principal Investigator(s)

John Jensen

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