Enhancement of Growth Rates and Swimming Performance in Juvenile Marine Finfish in Aquaculture

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R/A-126 (AQ)
Start/End: March, 2006 to February, 2008

Many of the benefits of exercise on human health appearto translate to fish. In preliminary experiments, researchers have shown that white seabass reared in raceways with moderately strong flows grow faster than their more sedentary counterparts in low-flow environments. The goal of this project is to quantify the effects of sustained exercise on stress and growth rates in select species of hatchery-reared juvenile marine finfish. It is hypothesized that exercise reduces stress (as measured blood cortisol levels) in cultured finfish and modulates key physiological processes involved in muscle growth (such as levels of growth hormone and production of insulin-like growth factor). Findings from the project will be used to build and test new raceways for rearing finfish. As part of the project’s outreach component, middle and high school girls participating in the BE WiSE (Better Education for Women in Science and Engineering) program in San Diego will participate in a series of educational lectures, tours and experiments relating to this research and to aquaculture and marine science in general.

Co-principal Investigators