Fish farming in an off-shore facility. (Photo: Kampachi Farms)
Hydroacoustic tools help estimate farmed fish biomass
Friday, May 03, 2013, 01:10 (GMT + 9)
The Business Association of Marine Aquaculture Producers of Spain (Apromar), the Aquaculture Technology Centre of Andalusia (Ctaqua) and the Research Institute for Integrated Coastal Zone Management (UPV) are evaluating the use of hydroacoustic tools to estimate the total biomass of farmed fish.
These studies, which are developed in the framework of the project Design of technologies for the calculation of fish total biomass in offshore installations, aim to avoid the economic damages resulting from incorrect measurement.
The researchers involved in the initiative argue that provided there is accurate knowledge of the biomass, feeding, protection and harvesting activities can be run efficiently, Ctaqua reported.
The project management divided the work into two phases.
The first stage focused on the investigation of the existing technology, which was better suited to the objectives of the project.
After a period of analysis of the gear status, the team concluded that aquaculture can make significant progress by using hydroacoustic monitoring systems.
The experts found that this technique allows sufficiently precise measurements of the fish biomass. In addition, they stress that hydroacoustic system installation is easy and quick.
During the second phase, which is being run, a technical consultancy was performed for the installation of hydroacoustic equipment, data processing, analysis and presentation of the reports.
The goal is to determine the appropriateness of the technology for use in bream and sea bass marine aquaculture facilities.
The tests that were carried out confirm that this technology is a possible standard management tool for the aquaculture industry.
The proponents of the initiative foresee the development of new tests to optimize the methodology and measurement parameters.
Ctaqua highlighted the collaboration of the company BioSonics, which conducted important research and development work on the salmon aquaculture management technology based on their echo sounder systems (COTS).
The budget of the project amounts to EUR 214,000. Of this total, EUR 175,000 will be provided -- as an aid to the 2011Technological, Fisheries and Aquaculture Development -- by the General Secretariat of Marine Affairs of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment (Magrama).
It is expected that the final results of the initiative are known in February 2014.
By Analia Murias