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Development of a tool for monitoring spat from aquaculture mussels based on mussels on navigation buoys



The choice of potential mussel culture sites is frequently complicated by the lack of prior knowledge of recruitment and growth under farmed conditions, particularly with respect to spat. And once established, mussel culture operations continue to need annually updated information about spat performance. In addition, the approaches generally used in this field are often plagued by problems inherent in the spatial and temporal variability in the marine environment. The potential aquaculture territory in Quebec covers a vast geographic area, which poses a significant obstacle to the acquisition of relevant information. These constraints impose choices that limit the geographic scope of conventional monitoring programs, although the conventional approach does have the advantage of allowing the study of finer processes. This lack of information compromises the industry's ability to plan its research needs and its development based on sound data. It is therefore essential to develop effective and economical strategies for studying geographic variations in the recruitment and growth of mussel spat. The project objective is to develop a simple, effective and low-cost method for monitoring recruitment and growth of mussel spat. We will compare spat populations from conventional collectors with spat found on navigation buoys at various sites in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The spat from collectors can be considered to be representative of the aquaculture situation and will serve as a control. The spat from buoys will be the main focus of study in terms of its usefulness for aquaculture monitoring.

Program Name

Aquaculture Collaborative Research and Development Program (ACRDP)


2006 - 2010


Atlantic: Gulf of St. Lawrence, St. Lawrence Estuary

Principal Investigator(s)

Marcel Fréchette

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