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Marine Research News - 2009

No.1: Mortality of herring after being crowded in a purse seine

When purse seining for herring, catch regulation have traditionally been done by discarding all or part of the catch if it is too big, or if the size or quality of the herring does not match requirements. Net burst is also quite common. Experiments have shown that mackerel do not tolerate much crowding before mortality rates become unacceptably high. It has been speculated that this may also be the case for herring.

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No. 2: Omega-3 fatty acids are also important to the lobster ’s brain

Not only humans benefit from omega-3 fatty acids. Recent studies show that various types of fatty acids have different impacts on the formation of new brain cells in juvenile lobsters.

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No. 3: Fish farm escapees: Identification with DNA

A DNA-based forensic identification method that enables the identification of farm of origin for unreported escapees has been developed by researchers at IMR. The method has been successfully implemented in several cases and is currently being applied in identification of salmon, rainbow trout and cod escapees. The method is developed in order to assist the Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries.

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No. 4: Behaviour of escaped rainbow trout

Rainbow trout are mainly farmed in fjords. They are thought to be more sedentary after escaping than escaped salmon, however this has not previously been well documented. The behaviour of escaped rainbow trout is now being studied in the fjords around the island of Osterøy in Hordaland in order to increase our understanding of escaped fish and to develop recapture strategies.

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No. 5:The migratory instinct of escaped salmon smolts

Particular effort to prevent escapees should have high priority throughout the smolts first summer in the sea. Farmed smolts that escape in the spring follow in the footsteps of wild smolts, quickly migrating towards the ocean, before returning to the area where they were hatched to spawn in the rivers along with the wild salmon.

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No. 6: Reduced levels of salmon lice found during wild salmon migration in 2009

When the Atlantic salmon migrate to the sea during spring and early summer, the levels of salmon lice are recorded in selected fjord systems. In 2009, in both the Hardangerfjord and the Hjeltefjord, the levels of salmon lice were the lowest ever recorded, and in the Hardangerfjord much lower than in 2008.

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No. 7: Salmon attempt to avoid delousing agent

Bath treatments are often used to control sea lice on large farmed salmon. This involves putting a tarpaulin skirt or bag around the cage, and mixing the therapeutant into the water in which the fish are confined. New studies have shown that it is difficult to keep the fish inside the treated volume of water in the large cages used at modern fish farms. When using a tarpaulin skirt, it is therefore advisable to raise the bottom of the cage up to the skirt.

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No: 8: Carrying Capacity in Norwegian Aquaculture – CANO

In aquaculture the carrying capacity may be defined as the maximum amount of an aquaculture organism that can be produced in an area without the environmental effects exceeding accepted levels. The CANO project will contribute to determine the carrying capacity and ensure a sustainable aquaculture industry.

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No: 9: Molecular studies of salmon lice

Salmon lice are an important threat to wild populations of salmon and sea trout and a growing problem in aquaculture. At the Institute of Marine Research, a molecular characterization of salmon lice is performed to provide a detailed study of salmon lice biology.

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No. 10: MOLO Fish farms, monitoring and location

For the aquaculture industry to be sustainable, the environmental impacts produced by farms must not exceed the carrying capacity of the areas where they are located. Farmed fish and shellfish must also be kept in good conditions, and aquaculture must be coordinated with other activities that take place along the coast. Finding suitable locations is therefore the key to ensuring that the industry is sustainable, by which we mean not only deciding where to locate farms, but also how big they should be and how they should be designed and run.

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No. 11: Carrying capacity in fish farming

We define the carrying capacity of a site or area used for aquaculture as the maximum quantity of fish or shellfish that can be farmed there without the environmental impacts exceeding agreed tolerance limits. These limits on permitted impacts must be measurable, and cannot be exceeded if the aquaculture industry is to be sustainable.

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No. 12: Sterile fish – the solution to the problem of escapees?

Both the authorities and fish farmers are currently working hard to make it more difficult for fish to escape from cages. However, we know that it will hardly be possible to prevent all escapes. The best way of guaranteeing that farmed salmon do not spread their genes in the wild is to make them sterile, which prevents them from reproducing, even if they do escape.

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No. 13: Flødevigen Research Station – A Centre for Coastal Research

Flødevigen Research Station near Arendal was founded in 1882, as a “hatchery” for cod fry. Now 127 years old, it is one of the oldest stations of its kind in Europe.

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No. 14: Austevoll Research Station – where marine species are born

Austevoll Research station plays a central role in our activities on marine species in all their life stages. Halibut, cod, Ballan wrasse, Calanus finmarchicus, great scallop and blue mussel are our main species for the time being. More than 4500 square metres of indoor area and its extensive outdoor areas, makes Austevoll one of Europe’s largest and most advanced research facilities in this field. Facilities ashore and in the sea for keeping fish and shellfish throughout their life cycle provide a unique basis for experimental studies of all life stages, sizes and qualities.

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No. 15: Matre Research Station – state of the art

Since the opening in 1971, the research station in Matre, 80 km north of Bergen, has been the core
facility for the salmonid research of the Institute of Marine Research and of several national and international collaborators. In 2006,
the research station was totally modernised with new water supplies, new and better experimental facilities and new analytical laboratories.

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No. 2: Omega-3 fatty acids are also important to the lobster ’s brain

Not only humans benefit from omega-3 fatty acids. Recent studies show that various types of fatty acids have different impacts on the formation of new brain cells in juvenile lobsters.

Download:

Austevoll Research Station – where marine species are born

Austevoll research station plays a central role in our activities on marine species in all their life stages. Halibut, cod, Ballan wrasse, Calanus finmarchicus, great scallop and blue mussel are our main species for the time being. More than 4500 square metres of indoor area and its extensive outdoor areas, makes Austevoll one of Europe’s largest and most advanced research facilities in this field. Facilities ashore and in the sea for keeping fish and shellfish throughout their life cycle provide a unique basis for experimental studies of all life stages, sizes and qualities.

Download: