NIWA has constructed and commissioned two new research units to provide future support and R&D capability to the New Zealand aquaculture sector as it diversifies and develops. They are: a commercial scale nutrition trials unit at Bream Bay Aquaculture Park near Whangarei, and a disease investigation and challenge unit at our Greta Point campus in Wellington.
Spring is upon us and NIWA’s stock of 86 spawning hāpuku broodstock have emerged from the winter to begin spawning. This is the sixth year we’re spawning from wild-caught broodstock to develop hāpuka as a new high-value aquaculture species.
New Zealand’s green credentials are a key selling point for aquaculture products in an increasingly discerning world market. With the aquaculture industry poised to expand, we need robust tools to manage potential environmental impacts, including those of new finfish species. NIWA’s sustainable aquaculture programme addresses this need.
Koi carp – a high-risk alien species. (Photo: NIWA)
The risk posed by alien fish to our freshwater species and habitats can now be evaluated using a model developed by NIWA scientists. The Freshwater Fish Risk Assessment Model (FRAM) assesses the risk of new alien fish species becoming established in New Zealand, and, importantly, their capacity to damage the environment, giving an overall ‘ecological risk’.
FRAM is powerful and simple to use.