DTU Aqua’s research into Shellfish Aquaculture and Fisheries focuses on production potential and resilience of coastal areas in relation to shellfish aquaculture and fisheries.
DTU Aqua is primarily engaged in the development of production methods and management systems that can optimise the economic and ecological sustainability of fisheries and farming.
Research on shellfish aquaculture and fisheries involves several of the institute’s research teams. In order to strengthen the development of activities in this field, an interdisciplinary research programme was established in 2010 to coordinate initiatives and progress.
The interdisciplinary research programme into Shellfish Aquaculture and Fisheries will focus on:
- Shellfish production
DTU Aqua conducts research on shellfish production in coastal and offshore areas including long-line production and culture bed cultivation, where mussels are moved from one area to another to improve growth conditions. We are also working on developing shellfish aquaculture in relation to offshore wind farms.
- Nature conservation
The link between shellfish production and nature conservation is a focus area of DTU Aqua’s research. Among other things, we conduct impact assessments of mussel fishing in nature conservation areas and carry out research on mussel harvesting as a method to remove aquatic nutrients. DTU Aqua is also engaged in developing less harmful fishing gear in order to reduce the impact of mussel and oyster fishing.
- Invasive species
The impact of invasive shellfish species on marine habitats is a focus area. In particular, Pacific oyster can have a significant impact on the ecological structure of coastal areas. Research includes topics such as local control of invasive species, for example by means of bio-manipulation or fishing.
- Stock studies
DTU Aqua develops effective systems for gathering knowledge about shellfish resources. For example, we use video recordings and acoustic measurements in our stocks studies to provide a better data basis for managing shellfish fisheries.
Why do we do research into Shellfish Aquaculture and Fisheries?
There is an increased global demand for seafood. Although most fish stocks are fully exploited, there is still room for growth within fisheries and the aquaculture of several shellfish species.
The Danish mussel fisheries are the fourth-largest in Europe and play an important role in relation to local economies and employment.
Mussel aquaculture have favourable conditions in the Danish coastal areas in relation to production potential, and long-line blue mussel farming is a production method which sees widespread growth in Denmark.
However, both shellfish aquaculture and fisheries are experiencing intensive competition from the global market. Research is therefore needed to help enhance industry efficiency levels and adaptability to market demands and to ensure an ecologically sustainable production that complies with environmental management requirements.
What is the research used for?
The results of the research within the shellfish area are predominantly used as a basis for the consulting services that DTU Aqua offers to industry and authorities.
The public sector consulting services provided by DTU Aqua, e.g. to the Danish Directorate of Fisheries, include impact assessments of mussel fisheries in nature conservation areas (Natura 2000 sites). A scientific assessment of the impact of fisheries on the ecosystem in these sites is required before the authorities can permit any fishing.
DTU Aqua also assesses shellfish stock sizes, which help form the basis for determination of fishing quotas.
Our business consulting services usually take the form of projects where researchers collaborate with businesses, for example on developing less harmful fishing gear, new aquaculture technologies or new production forms.
View projects within the research area "Shellfish Aquaculture and Fisheries" in the project database DTU Orbit.