R-10-08 Aquatic animal health ecology of an industry-deployed integrated multi-trophic aquaculture system

Ian Bricknell
Aquaculture Research Institute
University of Maine


Integrated multi-trophic aquaculture (IMTA) combines the cultivation of finfish, which require food additions, with species such as shellfish and seaweed. The concept is that orrganic particulate wastes like uneaten fish food are removed by the filter-feeding shellfish, and nutrients are taken up by the seaweeds. In this project, Bricknell and colleagues partnered with Cooke Aquaculture to apply IMTA practices on a marine salmon farm, while examining the aquatic animal health ecology of such an integrated system. With the establishment of a full-scale demonstration IMTA farm, project partners (including Marine Extension Team member Chris Bartlett) are working to examine the application learning curve and associated risks involved in establishing productive IMTA culture practices, while simultaneously researching the role that mussels may play in perpetuating or limiting the spread of diseases and other aspects aquatic animal health ecology.

Four-year project 2011-2014
National Sea Grant National Strategic Initiative (NSI) funds $399,544