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Establishment of rearing density and validation of the growth curve of the Quebec strain of spotted wolffish in the precommercial stage



Spotted wolffish (Anarhichas minor) is a marine fish species with high rearing potential for eastern Canada. It has been the focus of concerted research efforts in eastern Quebec since 1999 with a view to the diversification of Quebec marine aquaculture production. Its main attributes are its early ontogeny, good growth performance at low temperatures, disease resistance, domestication characteristics and designation as a niche product in consumer markets. Due to its characteristics, spotted wolfish is a promising candidate species for commercial land-based rearing. A farm pilot project to perform production tests targeting marine species and the integration of saltwater recirculation technology is under study in the Lower St. Lawrence region. Reliable biotechnical data are needed in order to develop a rearing protocol and economic model adapted to our conditions and to the Quebec strain of spotted wolffish. Its production cycle is well understood (reproduction, first feeding, pre-grow-out of 0-25 g), but scientific data are still needed before moving to the pilot farm step. The objective of this research project is to fill these gaps. Component 1 of the project, currently under way at the Centre aquacole marin de Grande-Rivière (CAMGR), will enable the identification of the optimal rearing density of spotted wolffish in the commercial grow-out stage in the 15 to 300 g range. Component 2, scheduled to begin in June 2009, will consist of growth tests in the precommercial stage that will use controlled densities during the production cycle and basic genetic evaluation tools while documenting growth rate and food conversion in the Quebec strain.

Program Name

Aquaculture Collaborative Research and Development Program (ACRDP)


2009 - 2011


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

Principal Investigator(s)

Denis Chabot

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