Optimization of blue mussel (Mytilus edulis) seed culture using recirculation aquaculture systems

Blanco Garcia, A.; Kamermans, P.


By introducing recirculation aquaculture systems (RAS) in the nursery phase of the blue mussel (Mytilus edulis) (17–18 mm), we aimed at a similar growth and survival and a similar water quality compared to the commonly used flow-through systems (FTS). To calculate water flow and size of the biofilter, a series of experiments were done to determine clearance rate (9.26 mL min-1), pseudo faeces threshold (60 000 cells Pavlova lutheri mL-1), nitrogen production (0.00065 mg TAN h-1 ind-1 and 1.6 × 10-5 mg NO2–N h-1 ind-1) and oxygen consumption (0.03 ± 0.01 mg O2 h-1 ind-1). RAS showed no significant differences in water quality (0.06 mg TAN L-1; 7.7 mg O2 L-1) and growth performance of mussel seed specific growth rate (SGR = 5% day-1) after the experimental period of 4 weeks compared with FTS. The low water refreshment, 10% per day, as well as the constant chlorophyll concentrations (9.76 ± 1.06 µg L-1), suggests the potential of RAS as culture system for mussel seed.