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Assessment of the ecological risk associated with spat transfers in the mariculture industry and identification of mitigation methods



The risk of transfer of undesirable species potentially associated with transferred spat is currently the main reason for DFO's refusal to allow transfers in Quebec. However, security of the spat supply continues to be a critical factor for Quebec mariculture operations and sometimes depends directly on the approval of transfer requests. Better knowledge of the ecological risk associated with these transfers and field protocols designed to minimize the risk of introduction of undesirable species from spat supply sites would help minimize the risk posed by these transfers. It is therefore critical that the industry have as much information as possible on this subject in order to develop field protocols that would be considered satisfactory in the context of the DFO risk assessment process in the event that undesirable species are present at a supply site chosen by the industry. The general objective of this study is to identify and more effectively assess the ecological health risks associated with transfers of wild spat from mussels, sea scallops and clams and to propose methods for mitigating this risk.

Program Name

Aquaculture Collaborative Research and Development Program (ACRDP)


2007 - 2008


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

Principal Investigator(s)

Chris McKindsey

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