Posts Tagged ‘fish’

What is Aquaculture?

Saturday, January 17th, 2009

NOAA — Aquaculture – often referred to as fish farming or shellfish farming – is the art, science, and business of cultivating aquatic animals in fresh or marine waters for consumption and to supplement commercial and recreational fisheries. About 70 percent of the aquaculture in the U.S. is fresh water farming of catfish and trout. Marine aquaculture is just 20 percent of the entire U.S. industry. Most marine aquaculture is shellfish farming, such as oysters, clams, and mussels. Only a few U.S. farms grow marine finfish, including salmon, cod, cobia, Hawaiian yellowtail, and Pacific threadfin (moi).

Similar to farms on land, fish and shellfish farms come in various sizes and types – from small, family-owned commercial farms to large companies. Local, state and federal agencies, research institutions, and tribes run aquaculture facilities that produce the eggs used to farm many freshwater and marine species.

Currently, more than 80 percent of the seafood Americans eat is imported, and half of that comes from aquaculture. It is vital that the United States further develop its own sustainable aquaculture industry, both to reduce its annual $9 billion seafood import deficit and to keep pace with the growing demand for seafood.

NOAA’s Aquaculture Program is dedicated to fostering safe, sustainable aquaculture in collaboration with other NOAA offices including NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research and NOAA’s National Ocean Service.

Fish Help Slow Global Warming With Gut Rocks

Friday, January 16th, 2009

Scientists believe fish excrete lumps of calcium carbonate, known as “gut rocks,” that help maintain the ocean’s pH level.

By drinking salt water, fish ingest a lot of calcium, and they excrete more or less calcium carbonate depending on their size and the temperature of the water. “For a given total mass of fish, smaller fish produce more than bigger fish, and fish at higher temperatures produce more than fish at lower temperatures,” explains Rod Wilson of the University of Exeter in the UK.

The interaction between humans, animals and climage change is becoming more evident.