Kiel, Germany.- Mussels protect themselves against environmental disturbances and enemies through a hard, calcareous shell. Increased ocean acidification makes it difficult for organisms to form their shells. In a study published today, in the international journal Nature Communications, a group of scientists from the Kiel University and GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel show that mussel larvae react sensitively to ocean acidification, which leads to reduced calcification rates and shell dissolution.

New research from WorldFish undertaken as part of the CGIAR Research Program on Fish Agri-food Systems (FISH) identifies means to lessen the use of antimicrobials, such as antibiotics, antivirals, and antiprotozoals, in aquaculture. Intensification of fish farming systems has resulted in higher risks of disease outbreaks and a subsequent trend towards more antimicrobial use the report says.

If you are looking for a readable, succinct and authoritative overview on women in aquaculture, then you may appreciate the new Profile on Women in Aquaculture by Cecile Brugere and Meryl Williams. This Profile was developed with the collaboration of Aquaculture without Frontiers Australia, support from Skretting Australia, and subjected to a review by peers. It is now the 3rd Discover GAF Profile put out by the Gender in Aquaculture and Fisheries Section of the Asian Fisheries Society.

USA.- Scientists typically make every effort to keep all factors but one constant when doing an experiment. Global-change scientists might move a coral from a reef to an aquarium whose water is held 1°C higher to test the effects of the ocean warming predicted for the end of the century. Or they might decrease the water’s pH by 0.4 units to study the effects of ocean acidification.

UK.- New research has shown schooling fish constantly change who they decide to pay attention to and respond to one or two neighbours at a time. The study, published in PLOS Computational Biology, developed a new method combining behavioural analyses with a computer model to map the chain of direct interactions in a school of fish. The international research team, that includes the University of Bristol, found individual fish pay attention to its neighbours when the school moves together.

The field of applied phycology is advancing at an unprecedented and exciting pace. The increased use of algae presents diverse challenges including the protection of natural algal populations, making algal biomass production sustainable and balancing these challenges against the interlinked water-food-energy demands of the world’s growing population. The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the UN report on The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture 2016 highlights the rapid 8% per year expansion of seaweed farming over the past decade, to just over 27 million tonnes.

Belgium.- In view of growing aquaculture activities in natural ecosystems, the Ghent University research groups ‘Marine Biology’ (Prof. Marleen De Troch) and ‘Environmental Organic Chemistry and Technology’ (Prof. Jo Dewulf) are working on a Life Cycle Analysis (LCA). Ecological data, i.e. valuing marine biodiversity and energy flows in the marine food web will be included and integrated in the LCA.