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Aquaculture Environment Interactions

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AEI 2:27-38 (2011)  -  DOI:

Mitigation of sea level rise effects by addition of sediment to shrimp ponds

L. Della Patrona1,*, B. Beliaeff1, T. Pickering2

1Ifremer, Lagons, Ecosystèmes et Aquaculture durable (LEAD/NC) BP 2059, 98846 Nouméa Cedex, New Caledonia
2Secretariat of the Pacific Community—SPC Aquaculture Section, Private Mail Bag, Suva, Fiji Islands

ABSTRACT: In New Caledonia barren salt-pans located landward to mangroves are used for the construction of shrimp ponds. The existing farms are jeopardized by the projected rise in the sea level, because the landward boundaries of ponds are situated at the elevation reached by spring tides. One low-cost strategy for mitigating the effects of sea level rise is to raise the level of the bottom of ponds. To test the effectiveness of such an adaptation, we built 4 experimental ponds in the low-lying zone of an existing 10 ha shrimp pond. The level of the bottom of 2 ponds was raised by adding about 15 cm of agricultural soil. Placing agricultural soil in the pond did not impair the functioning of the shrimp pond ecosystem. On the contrary, it resulted in unexpectedly better shrimp production in the 2 ponds with agricultural soils versus control ponds. We conclude that placing a layer of soil inside shrimp ponds is a promising strategy for maintaining the viability of shrimp ponds as the sea level rises.

KEY WORDS: Climate change · Sea-level rise · Shrimp pond · Sediment enhancement · Biogeochemistry · Infaunal assemblages · New Caledonia

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Cite this article as: Della Patrona L, Beliaeff B, Pickering T (2011) Mitigation of sea level rise effects by addition of sediment to shrimp ponds. Aquacult Environ Interact 2:27-38.

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