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Aquaculture Environment Interactions

    AEI prepress abstract   -  DOI:

    Survival and growth of the Caribbean scallops, Argopecten nucleus and Nodipecten nodosus, in suspended systems at different culture depths and net replacement frequencies

    L. A. Velasco*, J. Barros

    *Corresponding author:

    ABSTRACT: Survival of the Caribbean scallops Argopecten nucleus and Nodipecten nodosus in suspended culture is relatively low. The effects of culture depth and frequency of net replacement on survival and growth of both scallops were assessed, in addition to the effects on the amount of biofouling and presence of predators in the culture systems. Hatchery-produced juveniles were kept in pearl-nets suspended at 3 different culture depths (6, 9 and 12 m) with 2 frequencies for net replacement (i.e. monthly and bimonthly). The productive performance of both scallop species was better at a depth of 12 m, with the exception of N. nodosus which showed higher growth at 6 m. Higher growth and survival were registered in A. nucleus and N. nodosus under monthly and bimonthly net replacement schemes, respectively. Frequency of presence and size of cymatid predators did not differ between treatments. but higher frequency and size of portunids occurred at bimonthly net replacement in A. nucleus culture nets. In most months, the biofouling dry biomass in the pearl-nets was higher in those maintained at a depth of 6 m with bimonthly net replacement. The results indicate that the survival of both scallops could be improved by maintaining the culture systems suspended at a depth of 12 m, under lower temperature conditions, and applying a monthly net replacement scheme in A. nucleus and a bimonthly scheme in N. nodosus, in order to minimize the biofouling on the nets and the scallops perturbation associated with net replacement, respectively.