The secret to a happy wrasse
This is what Mowi, as part of a collaboration with the Sustainable Aquaculture Innovation Centre (SAIC), Otter Ferry Seafish, BioMar and Scottish Sea Farms, is trying to find out.
Ballan wrasse display complex behavioural traits which means that their ability to function as effective delousers for our farm-raised salmon depends not only on the obvious factors like keeping them well fed but also ensuring that they are content in their environment.
Researchers are considering a range of nutritional and environmental factors, such as the formulation of feed and rearing conditions, and how they impact the growth and performance of ballan wrasse. It is hoped their work will improve the robustness, welfare, and resilience of ballan wrasse used in aquaculture and boost their ability to deal with sea lice.
Speaking about Mowi’s involvement in the project, Dougie Hunter, Technical Director, said: “With our dedicated hatcheries in Anglesey, North Wales, we rear cleanerfish for deployment to our salmon farms so we already have an insight into wrasse at every point of their lifecycle. This project will enable us to increase our knowledge on this species and further improve fish health and welfare by creating the very best conditions for our wrasse to thrive.”