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Fisheries and Aquaculture

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In Fisheries and Aquaculture, Woods Hole Sea Grant has identified two priority areas that best fit within the region’s academic and research environment: revitalizing our nation’s fisheries and development of sustainable aquaculture. In New England, these areas are very closely linked technologically and culturally. Thematic elements include:
  • oystersDevelopment of technology and programs to promote stock enhancement of natural fish and shellfish resources, including mechanisms to evaluate the efficacy of enhancement programs and the overall effectiveness of such programs;
  • Investigation of larval recruitment processes for fish and shellfish and development of means to understand the relationship between recruitment and physical and chemical characteristics of the environment;
  • Investigation of disease processes in marine organisms with an emphasis on prophylactics and management of diseased stocks to minimize economic losses to the natural fisheries and aquaculture industries; and
  • Promotion of business and industrial development through expanding efforts in coastal management and through understanding of the economics of marine related businesses.


Goal 1: To maintain and improve marine and estuarine habitat important to commercially important wild resources.

Objective: Implement an eelgrass planting/restoration program to improve habitat conditions for commercially important shellfish species in the region.

Goal 2: To enhance, restore and/or maintain wild populations of commercially important resources.

Objective 1: Test and compare various methods of restoration of bay scallops, and implement the most promising methods to measurably improve local bay scallop harvests.

Objective 2: Implement remote set technology on a regional scale to restore and enhance native oyster populations to improve oyster harvest and create a diverse habitat for associated marine organisms

Goal: To develop new candidate farmed species and to apply new farming technologies appropriate for southeastern Massachusetts within the bounds of minimal environmental impacts.

Objective 1: Explore the culture potential of underutilized shellfish species, such as razor clams and soft shell clams, in southeastern Massachusetts.

Objective 2: Quantitatively compare various types of culture methods and equipment in terms of survival, growth, cost effectiveness and environmental impact.

visionGoal: Stakeholders in the southern New England region will use knowledge gained from Woods Hole Sea Grant programs to promote science-based decision-making.

Objective 1: Provide a means to translate science and technology into applications relevant to southeastern Massachusetts and relay that information to appropriate user groups.

Objective 2: Educate stakeholders in southern New England who will promote sustainable, environmentally sound policies.

Last updated: June 24, 2014

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