AEI 2:61-74 (2011)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/aei00030

Farm size as a factor in hydrodynamic transmission of pathogens in aquaculture fish production

Nabeil K. G. Salama*, Alexander G. Murray

Marine Scotland Science, Marine Laboratory, 375 Victoria Road, Aberdeen AB11 9DB, UK

ABSTRACT: Global aquaculture production has rapidly increased over recent decades, primarily through the increase in production per farm unit. However, size (biomass) may be a factor in the transmission of infectious diseases between hydrodynamically linked fish farms. A combined epidemiological–simplified hydrodynamic model is used to demonstrate that as farm units increase they experience higher numbers of infections caused by a range of pathogen characteristics. The model demonstrates that as farm size increases in areas where faster currents prevail, there is a need to increase the separation distance between farms to prevent pathogen transmission. A comparison of production regimes demonstrates, however, that fewer, highly separated, larger farms reduce overall losses compared to numerous smaller farms in close proximity to each other.


KEY WORDS: Farm size · Pathogen transmission · Hydrodynamics


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Cite this article as: Salama NKG, Murray AG (2011) Farm size as a factor in hydrodynamic transmission of pathogens in aquaculture fish production. Aquacult Environ Interact 2:61-74. https://doi.org/10.3354/aei00030

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