New View of Shellfish Aquaculture and Eelgrass Interactions

TNC video screen captureThe Nature Conservancy (TNC) is working with Hog Island Oyster Company and the University of California Santa Cruz to assess the interactions between oyster aquaculture and eelgrass in Tomales Bay, California. The use of drones may help with these studies, and the validation of such aerial surveys could be highly valuable in both their perspective and economy (as this approach could be much less expensive than conventional side-scan sonar or diver-based methods). This TNC-produced video captures the study site and plan beautifully. The Tomales Bay studies are just beginning, so stay tuned to further developments and discussion.

CDFW Fish Hatcheries are Hiring!

Aquaculture job posting photo bannerDr. Mark Clifford, statewide environmental program manager for trout and salmon production, has shared this announcement, inviting qualified applicants to state service in the Department’s fish hatchery system:

The following exams are now being offered to qualify for positions working with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.  Specifically we are looking for exceptional candidates for our Statewide Hatchery Coordinator position and for positions as Fish and Wildlife Technicians at both inland and anadromous hatcheries.

  • Click here to learn about the Senior Environmental Scientist (specialist) series that is the classification for our Statewide Hatchery Coordinator.  The Statewide Hatchery Coordinator position will be filled in coming months and candidates must be on the eligible list by taking the exam. The exam is a self-appraisal performed on the CalCareers website.   Click here if you are new to California state service.  For questions on this position, contact Dr. Mark Clifford at 530-918-9450 or mark.clifford@wildlife.ca.gov.
  • Click here to learn about the Fish and Wildlife Technician series that is the classification for our non-managerial hatchery staff.  To apply in time for the next scheduled exam, you must submit a Standard State Application (Form 678), postmarked by the Final Filing Date of July 18, 2017.  Click here if you are new to California state service.

Information on several careers with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife can be found here.  Address any questions regarding these exams to the Human Resources Branch at (916) 653-8120.

Funding Available for Sustainable American Aquaculture through Foundation for Food and Agriculture

Up to $5M in new research funding will be awarded this year by the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) through its Sustainable American Aquaculture program. The program is intended to stimulate and advance innovative research in sustainable fish and shellfish production, provide economic opportunities to U.S. farmers, and increase the supply of domestically-produced, nutritious foods to meet growing consumer demand. The FFAR recognizes the major need to understand the biological and technological barriers, and market potential for a diverse range of aquatic species. The funding opportunity takes action to foster the understanding and minimizing of potential environmental impacts of aquaculture production that will be key to public acceptance of farmed fish and shellfish products, and long-term industry success.

Pre-proposal submissions  Continue reading

New film highlights importance of Marine Aquaculture in California and the U.S.

perspectives_film_cover_image_205_308_80auto_c1_c_c_0_0_1“Perspectives on Marine Aquaculture in California and the U.S.” is a short film recently produced by the Seafood for the Future program and Long Beach Aquarium and can be viewed here. It features prominent scientists and experts on the topic and discusses aquaculture’s role in the global food supply, the state of domestic marine aquaculture, and its future in the US and California.

“It’s important to put aquaculture into the broader context of food”, says Dr. Steve Gaines, Dean of UC Santa Barbara’s Bren School of Environmental Science & Management. “It’s easy to focus on the negative impacts of one form of food production in terms of environmental impacts, without recognizing that all forms of food production have some negative impacts.” Dr. Gaines goes on to point out how important it is to look at how all of those food production methods compare to one another. Recent research analysis shows that aquaculture, done well using today’s current best practices, can exert the lowest environmental impacts of any form of food production on the planet. Continue reading

Ventura Shellfish Enterprise plans model permitting strategy for new growers and re-vitalization of Port

MUSSEL UP | Ventura Harbor concept could become aquaculture blueprint for California and beyond

Quoting a recent article in the Ventura County Reporter by Chris O’Neal, “…when a group of entrepreneurial, scientifically minded individuals comes together for a project, big ideas can emerge. Such is the case of the Ventura Shellfish Enterprise — a proposed multiparty project that would allow for (20) 100-acre plots for growing mussels in state waters within the Santa Barbara Channel near Ventura Harbor.” Continue reading

Podcast – Oysters and Ocean Acidification

Dr. Tessa Hill, associate professor at Bodega Marine Labs, joined NPR’s Science Friday program to discuss the challenges facing shellfish aquaculture in the face of rising Ocean Acidification.

Listen in to learn more about challenges facing the oyster industry and what scientists, the industry, and policy makers can do to combat these challenging new ocean conditions.

Webcast & Report – Offshore Aquaculture in Southern California

Just in time for National Aquaculture Week, the Aquarium of the Pacific, Sea Grant, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released the second report of their Offshore Aquaculture Workshop series. This workshop continues the conversation with Federal and State agencies about how to improve regulatory confidence in aquaculture operations. The workshop introduced a model as a possible tool for decision making, and includes information on animal health management, protected species concerns, and a summary of the permitting process.

Webcast speakers include Dr. Jerry Schubel, president and CEO, Aquarium of the Pacific; Dr. James Morris, marine ecologist, NOAA’s National Ocean Service and National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science; and Dr. Paul Olin, aquaculture specialist, California Sea Grant and the University of California, San Diego, Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

Watch the webcastRead the reports.