Minor Fish Species

Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) has the most northern distribution of any freshwater fish species and is common in the Arctic and subarctic regions of North America, Europe, and Asia. It is a relatively new aquaculture species that, as yet, does not have much production. However, it is easy to culture, has wide consumer acceptance, and should return a fairly high price to producers.

Asian sea bass (Lates calcarifer), also known as baramundi, is a carnivorous fish that spends its first 2 3 years in freshwater and then migrates into the ocean to mature and spawn. Asian sea bass can be cultured in freshwater and brackish-water ponds, as well as in marine cages. Most production currently uses marine cages.

Countries that produce Asian sea bass are Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan, Thailand, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Australia. Production for 2002 was 16,000 tonnes.[1]

Atlantic halibut (Hippoglossus hippoglossus) is primarily produced in Norway, either in tanks or in marine net pens. Fish reach market size (5 kg) in about 3 4 years. Production for 1999 was approximately 400 tonnes.[2]

Blue catfish (Ictalurus furcatus) has many of the same desirable culture traits as channel catfish, yet most catfish production is of the latter species (see Channel catfish). This is probably due to the ease of spawning of channel catfish at a younger age and smaller size. However, a blue catfish/channel catfish hybrid is currently being evaluated for commercial production.

Bluefin tuna (Southern, Thunnus maccoyii; Northern, T. thynnus). The southern bluefin tuna is being developed as an aquaculture species in Australia, and the northern bluefin tuna is being grown in the Mediterranean, North America, and Japan. Tuna is grown primarily in large marine net pens. In Australia, tuna is caught from the wild, transferred to marine net pens, and cultured until attaining market size. In 2002, approximately 9000 tonnes of Southern bluefin tuna was grown to market size in Australia (personal communication; Dr. Geoff Allen, Australia).

Clariid catfish (Clarias sp.) are a family of walking catfish that have the ability to survive for extended periods of time out of water because they can breathe air directly. The pectoral fins are modified so that they can be used to walk across land, often traveling from pond to pond. Clarius batrachus and C. macrocephalus are important species in Asia, where they are cultured in Thailand, India, and the Philippines. In Africa, C. gariepinus (the sharptooth catfish) is most commonly cultured. Several hybrids are produced, but little production information on these exists. Most production occurs in ponds, although raceways with flow-through water are also used. Ponds tend to have very steep banks and fencing around the pond to keep the walking catfish from escaping. Production in 2002 was approximately 100,000 tonnes.

Cod (Gadus morhua) is a fish species that has attracted great interest for culture in Europe and Canada due to the overfishing of wild stocks. Cod can be grown in sea cages and can grow to market size (2.5 kg) in 18 28 months. Little production data can be found, although the literature is replete with potential production values. If financially feasible, cod production could supply a highly desirable product to consumers in the future.

Coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) is cultured mainly in Chile and is the other major salmonid (second to the Atlantic salmon) species grown for food. Atlantic salmon and coho salmon represent approximately 98% of the cultured salmonids. Marine cages are used as the most popular method of producing Coho salmon, and production in 2002 was approximately 110,000 tonnes.

European catfish (Silurus glanis) is the largest freshwater fish in Europe, reaching a length of 2 meters or more. Production occurs in ponds; however, data are difficult to obtain. Poland produced approximately 70 tonnes in 2002; however, other countries' production data on this fish are lacking.

European eel (Anguilla anguilla) is produced in several countries in Europe, with Italy as the major producer, growing them in tanks or ponds. Recently, however, eels have been cultured in The Netherlands and Denmark, which use recirculating indoor/outdoor systems. Production in 2002 was 10,000 tonnes.

European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) is highly prized throughout its native range where they have been heavily fished. Aquaculture production exceeds the wild catch by almost a 3:1 margin. Sea bass is grown mostly in sea cages with Greece, Turkey, and Italy being the largest producers. Production in 2002 was approximately 41,000 tonnes.

Gilthead sea bream (Sparus aurata) is generally grown in sea cages, as this is more profitable than raising the fish in ponds and raceways. The major producers are Greece, Turkey, and Spain, which account for over 70% of the production of approximately 64,000 tonnes in 2002. The desirability of gilthead sea bream is shown by the dramatic increase in production since the mid-1980s, when 100 tonnes was cultured.

Hybrid striped bass is the fourth most valuable food-fish species in the United States, with an estimated 5250 tonnes produced in 2002 (Fig. 1), for which consumers paid $US 26 million (personal communication; Dr. Jim Carlberg, United States). Hybrid striped bass can be either Palmetto bass (female striped bass, Morone saxatilis x male white bass, M. chrysops) or Sunshine bass (female white bass x male striped bass). The Sunshine bass is the most widely used cross due to the ease of obtaining white bass females. Hybrid striped bass can be cultured in ponds (57% of production) or tanks (43% of production).

Japanese flounder (Paralichthys olivaceus) is primarily produced in Japan, where it is the fourth highest produced marine finfish. Japanese flounder are generally fed locally available trash fish; however, prepared dry

Fig. 1 Annual production data (tonnes) for hybrid striped bass in the United States.


Fig. 1 Annual production data (tonnes) for hybrid striped bass in the United States.

diets are becoming more commonly used. Production in 1997 was approximately 8600 tonnes.[3]

Pacu (Piaractus mesopotamicus). Great interest has been shown in South America, especially Brazil, to grow this desirable fish species for the food and for the fee-fishing industries. A related fish, tambaqui (Colossoma macropomum), is also cultured in Brazil. Pacu and tambaqui are produced in ponds, but little information on production data can be found.

Pangasius catfish is widely cultured in southeast Asian countries. Two species are predominantly produced: striped catfish (Pangasius sutchi) and black-ear catfish (P. lamaudii). Both species are fast-growing fish that have a high dress-out percentage, similar to channel catfish (Ictalurus punctatus). Pangasius catfish can be grown in earthen ponds or cages moored in rivers or lakes.

Red drum (Sciaenops ocellatus), also known as redfish or channel bass, is native to the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. Juvenile fish are primarily grown in ponds before their release into the wild for stock enhancement, but food-fish have been cultured in a wide variety of systems including ponds, cages, net pens, raceways, and tanks using recirculating systems. The primary producer of red drum is the United States.

Red sea bream (Pagrus major) is one of the most popular food-fishes in Japan and its production ranks second in Japan, behind only the yellowtail. Since the late 1980s, production of red sea bream has almost doubled in Japan to 82,500 tonnes.[4]

Silver perch (Bidyanus bidyanus) is a freshwater fish endemic to southeast Australia. It has attracted the interest of Australian aquaculturists due to its ease of culture, mild-flavored fillet, and 40% dress-out percentage. Most production occurs in earthen ponds, although cage-culture may be a feasible culture method. Approximately 454 tonnes was produced in 2002.

Snakehead (Channa striatus), also known as murrel or serpent-headed fish, is found in South Africa, India, Burma, Thailand, and several other southeast Asian countries. Culture methods include growing fish in ponds or in cages. In Thailand, snakehead represents 5 10% of total freshwater-fish production and represents an industry worth an estimated $US 5 10 million.

Sturgeon (Acipenser spp.) is a primitive fish with several unique digestive features, including a spiral valve (like a shark) and ciliated epithelium in the intestines. Sturgeon is mostly prized for its caviar but is becoming increasingly threatened as a species due to pollution, overfishing, and poaching. Three main species are cultured: the White sturgeon (Acipenser transmontanus), the Siberian sturgeon (A. baeri), and the Adriatic sturgeon (A. naccarii). About 1000 tonnes are grown in circular or rectangular tanks and raceway systems, although cages and ponds are used to a lesser extent.

Yellow perch (Perca flavescens) is an important freshwater food-fish in the north-central region of the United States. Ponds are the most commonly used method of culture. Production in 2002 was approximately 2300 tonnes.

Yellowtail (Seriola quinqueradiata) is the most cultured marine fish in Japan in terms of volume and dollars, representing 70% of Japanese aquaculture production in 1997. Market size is 2 5 kg and fish are generally grown in marine net pens. Production in 2002 was approximately 145,000 tonnes.

Walleye (Stizostedion vitreum) is an important food-fish in the north-central region of the United States. Ponds are the most commonly used method to grow walleye to market size. Production in 2002 was approximately 2300 tonnes.

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