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New Dual Credit Course Offered By KSU Aquaculture

Students at Bullitt Central High School are the first section in a new dual credit agriculture course offered at Kentucky State University. Kenneth Semmens, Ph.D. is the instructor responsible for creating the multidisciplinary course, Aquaculture 201: Fisheries for an Educated Consumer, as part of a capacity-building grant from USDA/NIFA.

The curriculum has been modified as a dual credit course and offered at Bullitt Central High School in Shepherdsville, Kentucky and at Western Hills High School in Frankfort, Kentucky.

Students who successfully complete the course will receive both high school and college credit. High School faculty, Tiphanie Peake and JR Zinner coordinate with KSU faculty to instruct students in four units featuring Environmental Science, Fisheries, Aquaculture, and Food Science.



Humboldt State University Students Ultrasonography Training at the Aquaculture Research Center, Kentucky State University

Two Humboldt State University students from Northern California visited the Aquaculture Research Center at Kentucky State University for one week of ultrasonography training. Michelle Loftus is from Riverside in Southern California, and she is finishing up her undergraduate degree in Marine Fisheries Biology. This spring she will be using ultrasound imaging technology to evaluate the reproductive biology for redtail surfperch (Amphistichus rhodoterus) in the Pacific Ocean. Tess Badrigian is from Morro Bay on the Central Coast of California, and she is finishing up her undergraduate degree in Freshwater Fisheries Biology. She will be studying the reproductive biology of trout using ultrasonography.

The aim of their visit is to improve ultrasonography techniques for different fish species with different ultrasound imaging units. This includes (1) development of methodical fish handling procedures; (2) manipulation of ultrasound machine settings; and (3) development of a systematic approach for using different ultrasound machines for different fish species. They had hands-on training with Dr. Noel Novelo, and graduate student Jasmine Iniguez. They practiced with Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) and the American Paddlefish (Polyodon spathula), and discussed handling procedures, image acquisition, image interpretation, and the ultrasound control settings commonly found in any ultrasound imaging unit. Their visit has allowed us to strengthen collaboration with Humboldt State University. We shared and improved on the ultrasound imaging procedures because of excellent synergy, hands-on training, and ideas on developing ultrasound imaging techniques for different fish species.

The lead investigator at KSU's Division of Aquaculture is Dr. Noel Novelo. Jasmine Iniguez is a graduate student using ultrasonography to study Nile Tilapia. Ultrasonography is a well-developed technology that has become widely used in humans and farmed animals, and it has been used in fish reproduction for over 30 years. This imaging technology uses ultrasound waves (3 to 55 MHz) to create a crosssectional images of internal anatomy. Ultrasound imagining is a safe, non-invasive and rapid method for obtaining data on an internal biological process for farmed, wild, and endangered fish that play a valuable role in fisheries and aquaculture.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Former Aquaculture Graduate Student Becomes Dean

Ahmed S. Alsaqufi is a former graduate student at Kentucky State University. He worked in the area of Genetics with Dr. Boris Gomelsky on his thesis graduating with a Masters in Aquaculture and Environmental Sciences in December 2011. He continued his education by completing a Ph.D. program at Auburn University. All his hard work has paid off because he is now the Dean of Agriculture and Food Sciences at King Faisal University. Congratulations Ahmed S. Alsaqufi.


Nature's Brita Filter is Dying and Nobody Knows Why

On "good" bad days, the shells lie open at the bottom of the river, shimmering in the refracted sunlight. Their insides, pearl white and picked clean of flesh, flicker against the dark riverbed like a beacon, alerting the world above to a problem below. 

"That's what we look for in die-offs," says biologist Jordan Richard, standing knee-deep in the slow-flowing waters of the Clinch River in southwest Virginia. He points at a faint shape submerged about ten feet upstream. "I can tell from here that's a Pheasantshell, it's dead and it died recently. The algae development is really light."

The Pheasantshell is a freshwater mussel; a less-edible version of its saltwater cousin that spends most of its inconspicuous life part-buried in riverbeds, blending in with the rocks and filtering the water around them. 

In recent years though, biologists and fisherman noticed something was wrong. On sections of the Clinch and other waterways in the Pacific Northwest and Midwest, dead mussels were turning up on shores and could be seen glinting from the river bottom. Surveys revealed more fresh dead or dying mussels half-buried and rotting in still-clasped shells.

Click Here To Read Full Article


KSU's School of Aquaculture & Aquatic Sciences Education Programs



Ukraine Visitors Tour the KSU College of Agriculture and the Aquaculture Research Center

A group of approximately 25 mayors and city managers from Ukraine visited KSU College of Agriculture. Dr. Kirk Pomper discussed the role of the College of Agriculture and Land Grant Program at the Cooperative Extension Building. The group toured the Aquaculture Research Center's Production and Technology Building with Dr. Tidwell and Dr. Gomelsky. On their trip, they initially attended a conference on city management in Nashville, Tennessee. After stopping in Frankfort, they will visit Morgantown, West Virginia and Washington, DC.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Kentucky State University Researchers Present at the Aquaculture Europe 2019 Conference in Berlin, Germany

Dr. Bob Durborow, Dr. Andrew Ray and Dr. Boris Gomelsky attended Aquaculture Europe 2019 Conference in Berlin, Germany. Dr. Durborow presented a poster on his USDA grant to develop a database and mobile app on fish disease clinical case results with the objective of establishing collaborations with other fish disease research scientists in Europe. Dr. Gomelsky gave an oral presentation on color mutation in koi x goldfish hybrids.

Before the Conference, Drs. Durborow and Gomelsky met with Dr. Dieter Steinhagen at the University of Veterinary Medicine in Hannover to discuss collaboration plans, and with Dr. Ralph Kuehn at the Technical University of Munich. Dr. Durborow also discussed collaborative plans to share clinical diagnostic data and do beta-testing on the database and app with Conference trade show companies INVE, Hipra, IBM, Aqua Bio Tech, FishVet Group, and Biomin. Kentucky State University is looking into working with European groups ParaFishControl, iFishienCi, and IMPAQT that have ongoing Big Data projects.

Dr. Andrew Ray presented a poster and gave an oral presentation in an industry-based forum put together by the Euro Shrimp Organization, a group dedicated to supporting the continued development of shrimp farming in Europe. He then traveled to a super-intensive shrimp farm in Kiel, Germany called Förde Garnelen which is using innovative recirculating aquaculture techniques to produce large
quantities of high-quality shrimp.


Kala Mallik Evaluates the Effects of Microbial Phytase Supplemented to Soy-Based Diets

Kala Mallik has concluded an eleven week growth experiment that evaluated the effects of microbial phytase supplemented to soy-based diets on the production performance of juvenile largemouth bass. The computed data from his study indicated that the supplementation of 2,000 units of phytase per kg of diet can make phytate phosphorus available to the fish reducing the need for inorganic phosphorus
supplementation. The effects of supplemental phytase will also be assessed on an ongoing digestibility trial expected to be carried out until the middle of December. Results from Mallik's study will be presented in the upcoming Kentucky Academy of Science and Aquaculture America Meetings. We thank the Kentucky Soybean Promotion Board for funding Mallik's assistantship and research.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Kentucky State University Aquaculture Faculty and Staff Assist Kentucky Farmer with Harvest

Dr. Ken Semmens and Mr. John Kelso have been working with a farmer from London, Kentucky. On Saturday, October 19, 2019, John Kelso and Dr. Noel Novelo went to James Ulrich's farm. Ulrich was harvesting fish from his floating raceway and had made a loading basket for his small tractor that he would try for the first time. They harvested both catfish and tilapia Saturday. The tilapia will be used to help provide pathways to the ethnic markets and the hybrid catfish will be stocked in West Virginia ponds for recreational fishing.


Weed Prevention in Ponds Using Koi x Goldfish Hybrids

Koi (colorful common carp) “stir up” pond bottoms, causing turbidity (either muddiness or a green phytoplankton color from nutrients released from the mud). This turbidity (opaque water) blocks sunlight penetration, preventing the growth of aquatic weeds. Weeds interfere with fishing, boating, swimming and overall pond productivity. Koi’s rearrangement of pond bottom mud can be seen in the drained ponds.

However, stocking of koi in water bodies can result in overcrowding because of uncontrolled spawning of fish. Therefore, using koi x goldfish hybrids for weed control should have some advantage compared with pure koi due to reduced fertility of hybrids. Currently, Drs. Boris Gomelsky and Noel Novelo are investigating reproductive ability of koi x goldfish hybrids. Another objective of these studies is to develop color morphs of koi x goldfish hybrids. Advantages of colorful hybrids are better visibility and identification as well as increased value as ornamental fish. On the photos you can see yellowish and dark-brown (bronze) morphs of hybrids, which have been developed at Kentucky State University.

Photos by Dr. Bob Durborow and Dr. Boris Gomelsky


Aquaculture Students Electrofishing on the Kentucky River

Dr. Ken Semmens took his Fish Morphology and Physiology class on the Kentucky River Tuesday, October 8, 2019. This trip on the river was part of the class lab. Students took turns on the shocking boat and dip netting the stunned fish out of the river. The Kentucky River was down but the weather could not have been better. Several fish were captured and the students picked their fish and they will have to present on the fish's morphology and physiology.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Paola Flores Conducts Her Research for BIO 410 Special Problems in Biology at the Aquaculture Research Center

Paola Flores is from Puerto Rico and is a graduating senior at Kentucky State University. She is enrolled in BIO 410, Special Problems in Biology under Dr. Nancy Wallin. The study the Paola will be working on will evaluate two native fish for aquaponics production: largemouth bass and bluegill. Both species are valuable as sport-fish and food-fish. She spent this week seining fish from ponds and grading them before stocking them into tanks. Her mentors at the Aquaculture Research Center are Janelle Hager and Shawn Coyle.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Team Ray's Kale Acclimation and Nitrate Uptake Study

Following excellent results with the kale salt tolerance study, team Ray wanted to determine if there was a difference in survival during the acclimation process based on plant age. Kale Winterbor F1 hybrid (Brassica oleracea) seeds were sown in perlite, transplanted into grow grips at 3 weeks old and given 5 days to recover from mild chlorosis and transplant shock prior to beginning acclimation to salt. Acclimation times began with 4 and 5 week-old seedlings, the previous study began acclimation with 8 week old plants. All plants had true leaves established prior to acclimation and both acclimation times yielded 100% survival with healthy foliage.

Nitrate uptake was also added to the study to determine nutrient uptake ability of kale at 10 and 20 ppt. salinities. Nitrate levels of 80 mg/L were added to half the buckets at each salinity, and all buckets were fertilized with 50mL of Fox Farm Grow Big liquid fertilizer (3-2-6) on stocking day. Water quality parameters were documented weekly (temperature, dissolved oxygen, pH, salinity), in addition to lab tests for total ammonia, nitrite and phosphate.

Plants were harvested at 10 weeks of age due to competition for space between plants. Data collected included plant height, number of leaves, wet and dry weights of both roots and shoots, root to shoot ratio, chlorophyll content index (CCI), and leaf area index (LAI). Plant and water samples will be sent to an independent lab for nutrient analysis.

Overall, kale shows good salt tolerance and produces healthy and marketable foliage at salinities conducive to brackish-water aquaponics. Future studies will involve tolerance to reused shrimp water and a full grow-out with repeated harvests of kale.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Dr. Novelo, Dr. Semmens and Jasmine Iniquez Refine Ultrasound Imaging of Paddlefish, Polyodon spathula

Ultrasound imaging is used in fisheries and aquaculture for sex identification and reproductive assessment for conservation purposes (for example, Pallid Sturgeon Scaphirhynchus albus), and for improved production efficiency (for example, Channel Catfish Ictalurus punctatus). Ultrasound imaging initiatives at Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Research Center aim to develop standardized fish handling and ultrasound imaging procedures for commercially important species in Kentucky. Ultrasound imaging requires intimate knowledge of internal gross anatomy of organs and their location with respect to other internal structures (dorsal, ventral, adjacent, posterior or anterior to the target organ) and with respect to fixed external anatomical markers (e.g. fins, caudal peduncle, urogenital pore). Each time ultrasonography is used in different fish species, the gross internal anatomy with respect to external morphology needs to be resolved so that fish handling and ultrasound imaging procedures may be developed and optimized. The first goal for use of ultrasound imaging in the American Paddlefish Polyodon spathula after fish handling and ultrasound imaging procedures are developed is to identify and separate males and females early in the production process. This will overcome the limitations in production caused by the lack of sexual dimorphism in this fish species.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Aquaponics Association 2019 Conference at Kentucky State University

Kentucky State University hosted the 2019 Aquaponics Association Conference at the H.R. Benson Research and Demonstration Farm. Over 250 participants from the U.S. and 10 countries convened in Frankfort, KY over the weekend to share information, network, and talk all things aquaponics. The three-day conference featured keynote talks on the state of global aquaculture and aquaponics (Dr. Jim Tidwell), aquaponics in prisons (Mac McLeon), an overview of the aquaponics industry and system evolution (Charlie Shultz), and a summary of an aquaponics industry survey (Allen Pattillo).

Three concurrent sessions were featured for STEM educators and the research community, Commercial Producers and Food Safety, and Community-based aquaponics and international opportunities. Participants were able to tour the organic research farm at KSU, FoodChain in Lexington, KY, and the KSU Aquaculture Research Center. By all accounts, the conference was a huge success! We would like to thank the Aquaponics Association for an inspiring weekend and the unparalleled opportunity to bring the aquaponics community together!

Photos by Charles Weibel


Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Research Center Harvest A Freshwater Prawn (Macrobrachium rosenbergii) Feeding Trial

Kalvin Rucker has been working all Summer with his mentor Shawn Coyle on this feeding trial to determine the potential for Wet Brewers Grains (WBG) to be used as feed/fertilizer for pond production of freshwater prawns.

The trial was harvested this week with the help of Kentucky State University faculty, staff and students. Mr. Rucker plans to present this research at the Kentucky Academy of Science as well as the nineteenth annual Posters-at-the- Capitol program in Frankfort, Kentucky. His abstract is below:

Production Performance of Freshwater Prawn
(Macrobrachium rosenbergii) Reared at Two Stocking
Densities and Fed Only Wet Brewers Grains

Photos by Charles Weibel


Dr. Gomelsky and Dr. Novelo Mentor Another Frankfort High School Student

"My name is Bridges Hardin. I have been fishing since I could hold a rod, and have always been interested in hatchery work. I've also been on trips with my dad to the Elkhorn Creek hatchery multiple times. I'm good with new people, working with others, and problem-solving."

Bridges is the sixth Frankfort High School (FHS) senior to complete the internship requirement for FHS graduation with the fish reproduction and genetics laboratory at Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Research Center. He has been very punctual, and active; he works alongside David Fox, Jasmine Iniguez, and Jeffrey Warner.

Mr. Hardin has had hands-on experience in feeding fish and recirculating system husbandry. He also helped with fish handling in ponds and outside tanks. And, he assists in ultrasound imaging diagnostics of Nile Tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus. We are pleased to welcome him to the Aquaculture Research Center, and as part of Dr. Gomelsky and Dr. Novelo's laboratory team. Previous high school seniors that were part of the FHS Mentorship program and worked with Dr. Gomelsky and Dr. Novelo's laboratory team include Jacob McCowan (Fall 2016), Caroline Bramble (Fall 2017), Gage Miller (Fall 2017, and Spring 2018), Laken Rowland (Fall 2018), and Kaleb Thomas (Fall 2018).

Photos by Charles Weibel


Team Gomelsky Move Koi and Koi x Goldfish Hybrids To The Aquaculture Production And Technologies Laboratory

Koi and koi x goldfish hybrids were netted from the outdoor tanks located at the Aquaculture Research Center this week and transported to the Aquaculture Production and Technology Laboratory

Dr. Gomelsky's team is investigating inheritance and expression of some dominant koi color mutations in koi x goldfish hybrids. The purpose of this study is to development color variations of hybrids which could be used for weed controls in ponds and recreational water bodies.

One-hundred of the Koi will be used by Western Hills High School located in Franklin County. The koi were picked up by a teacher, J.R. Zinner who has been working with Ken Thompson. Ken has been collaborating with this particular school during the 2019-20 academic school year (STEM Education USDA Capacity Building Grant project). Western Hills is one of eight schools participating in the project this year.

Students are engaged in hands-on aquaponics project-based investigation (APBI) environments designed to develop a depth of learning the standard-based ecological concepts based on current Next Generations Science Standards (NGSS). Students will also gain a deeper conceptual understanding of the aquaculture content material.

Photos by Charles Weibel


AQU 412/512 Laboratory Excercise - Catfish Morphology

Dr. Ken Semmens had students in his AQU 412/515 class conduct a lab on catfish morphology this week. The objective is to carefully observe and record the external and internal morphology of the animal.

Students made external observation, took appropriate measurements including total weight, total length, fork length, and density. They also dissected the fish to seek to document the following systems:

Integument, skeletal, muscle, circulatory, nervous, respiratory, digestive, reproductive, along with examination of fins, rays, spines, operculum, mouth, gills, and the lateral line.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Nathan Kring Defends His Master's Thesis

Nathan Kring successfully defended his Thesis "The Effects of Stocking Density and Artificial Substrates on Production of Pacific White Shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) and Water Quality Dynamics in Greenhouse-Based Biofloc Systems." His Major Professor is Dr. Andrew Ray and Dr. Tidwell along with Dr. Rossi were also on his committee.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Identification of Biological Structures Using Ultrasound Imaging

The objective of this exercise is to provide a hands-on experience for each student to identify biological structures in live fish and interpret images obtained with ultrasound devices. The lab began with a presentation by Dr. Novelo on the principles of ultrasound and the two devices to be used in the lab. Following the presentation, the class moved to the hatchery and set up to examine Channel catfish. Students were divided into two groups corresponding to the two ultrasound units. Each student had the opportunity to operate the probe and the controls of each ultrasound machine. Dr. Noel demonstrated each unit as needed.

Ultrasound images were obtained with two ultrasound machine systems. The first images were taken by an older ultrasound unit (model: Aloka SSD-500V; Aloka Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan) with a single
frequency 5 MHz probe (model: UST-5820-5; Aloka Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan). The second ultrasound system used was a more advanced ultrasound unit (model: Ibex® EVO™ Ultrasound; E.I. Medical
Imaging®, Loveland, Colorado, USA), with a multiple frequency probe (model L10X; E.I. Medical Imaging®, Loveland, Colorado, USA) and a goggle-style headset (model: InSite®2 Video Headset; E.I. Medical Imaging®, Loveland, Colorado, USA) that is very useful in bright sunlight and heavy reflective environments that may cause difficulty in viewing images on the display screen on the machine.

Examples of internal anatomy viewed:
· Skin
· Muscles - segmentation of muscles by the horizontal septum and vertical septum.
· Vertebrae (and other bone structures)
· Urinary Bladder
· Buccal cavity
· Brain
· Heart
· Swim Bladder

Photos by Charles Weibel


Dr. Bob Durborow's Team Performs Health Inspection In Midway, KY

Dr. Durborow did a health inspection of paddlefish with Extension Assistant Ashmita Poudel and graduate students Tifani Watson and Tyler McKay at Dr. Steve Mims' fish production facility in Midway, KY.


Dr. Bob Durborow's Team Visit A Future Aquaponics Facility in Windsor, KY

Dr. Bob Durborow took his graduate students Tifani Watson & Tyler McKay, and Extension Assistant Ashmita Poudel and grad student Anthony Adams to a southern Kentucky aquaponics operation being constructed by Rod Wolford and managed by Daniel Allen. The facility is located in Casey County, KY.


Brandylyn Thomas Continues Her Thesis Research

Performing DNA extraction on nine strains of Nile tilapia. Fin clips were taken from 171 individuals and stored in 95% ethanol. Following the mouse tail protocol, the Promega DNA extraction kit was used to extract DNA from tissue that weighed between 20-25mg. Once extracted, nine targeted microsatellite markers will be amplified with polymerase chain reaction (PCR). PCR product will then be separated by capillary electrophoresis using the Applied Biosystems Genetic Analyzer 3500 to determine genetic heterogeneity of each strain and distances amongst strains.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Dr. Andrew Ray Presents in Brazil

Dr. Ray traveled to Fortaleza, Brazil to give a research seminar to students, staff, and faculty at the LABOMAR Research Facilities, part of the Federal University of Ceara. He then traveled to Natal, Brazil to present the first half of an all-day long workshop on intensive shrimp farming. The workshop attracted over 175 participants who were all highly engaged and gave highly positive reviews of the material. Dr. Ray also traveled across Northern Brazil, visiting a variety of shrimp farmers, all of which are intensifying their production and interested in learning about the research being conducted at KSU.


Dr. Semmens's Fish Morphology and Physiology Class Toured Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory

On August 27, 2019 the Fish Morphology and Physiology class toured the Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, Department of Veterinary Science, College of Agriculture, Food & the Environment, College of Public Health at the University of Kentucky. Diane Murphy gave the complete tour of an impressive facility. The histology lab was of particular interest. She demonstrated the use of
the microtome as she described the process of preparing a slide and featured each of the various automated devices.

This laboratory is a fine example of something our students cannot find on campus. It was very good for the students to hear of the way they identify each sample and recheck to see that records are in order in every step of the process. Perhaps some of the students will make better use of histology in their research.


Scientific Breakthrough at the Florida Aquarium could save America's 'Great Barrier Reef'

(CNN)The Florida Aquarium in Tampa, Florida, says they've made scientific history as a group of coral has successfully reproduced two days in a row for the first time in a lab setting.

The milestone could have broad implications for "America's Barrier Reef," which is the third largest coral reef in the world and is found just off the coast of the Florida Keys.

The successful result is part of what the aquarium calls "Project Coral" -- a program designed in part with the goal of ultimately repopulating the Florida Reef Tract. The project works in partnership with London's Horniman Museum and Gardens to create coral spawn, or large egg deposits, in a lab.

Click Here For Full Article



Dr. James Tidwell Addresses the United Nations Association

Dr. James Tidwell addresses the United Nations Association on Monday, May 20, 2019 at the Paul Sawyier Public Library. His talk will focus attention on the important role of aquaculture in providing future food supplies. The Frankfort Chapter of the United Nations Association of the USA will sponsor a program on Monday, May 20, at the Paul Sawyier Public Library's Community Room at 6:30 p.m. in Frankfort, Kentucky.

Dr. Jim Tidwell, Chair of the School of Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences at Kentucky State University, will discuss " Aquaculture: Feeding the Future." The program is free, and the public is invited to attend.

"Given that most wild fish populations have been fully exploited or even depleted, while human populations continue to grow, aquaculture is becoming increasingly important in providing healthy protein to an ever-increasing world population," said Dr. Jim Tidwell. "Additionally, fish are inherently more efficient than land-animals, allowing better utilization of finite resources.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Dr. Noel D. Novelo Joins Faculty of KSU's Aquaculture Program of Distinction

Dr. Noel Novelo is a Kentucky State University alumni. He completed the KSU Master's Degree in the School of Public Administration (2001), and the KSU Master of Science Degree in Aquaculture/Aquatic Sciences (2008). Dr. Boris Gomelsky was his mentor and major advisor during his graduate studies at KSU's Aquaculture Program of Distinction. He became a doctoral candidate at Louisiana State University under the mentorship of Dr. Terrence R. Tiersch after his studies at KSU; he completed Louisiana State University's PhD. degree in Wildlife and Fisheries Science, specializing in Aquaculture Reproduction and Genetics (2014); and, he continued as a post-doctoral researcher at LSU in channel catfish reproduction.

Dr. Novelo was employed at KSU as a Research Associate in 2016 with 100% research responsibilities. This research was on the use of crossbreeding and genetic sex regulation for identification and development of a fast-growing Nile Tilapia cross. The genetic gains in growth performance identified through this tilapia research, and the use of Nile tilapia as an alternative species, contribute to diversification efforts in Kentucky aquaculture and improvement of tilapia production in the USA.

Dr. Novelo currently holds a new position at KSU as Assistant Professor of Aquaculture with Extension and Research responsibilities. He will serve as a State Extension Specialist in Aquaculture, and he will conduct research in fish genetics with a range of fish species.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Dr. Andrew Ray Publishes SRAC Publication on Indoor Marine Shrimp Farming

Click the link below for the full publication:

SRAC Publication No. 2602




Meet the Author: Largemouth Bass Aquaculture

Jim Tidwell, author of the book Largemouth Bass Aquaculture, which is published by 5m books in April, explains the appeal of a species whose growth is taking off both in China and the US.

Click the link for full article:





Kentucky Is King Of American Caviar


Click the link below for article:




Graduate Assistanceships for Aquaculture & Aquatic Sciences

A limited number of graduate research assistantships are available for qualified, full-time, thesis-track Aquaculture & Aquatic Sciences students. Assistantships are typically funded through grants from state and federal agencies and are awarded only after a student has been academically accepted into the program. Additionally, a student should be able to verify that academic aid is essential to engage in graduate studies and that they are academically deserving. Academic acceptance does not guarantee an assistantship will be available. Students granted graduate assistantships are required to assist with activities relevant to the grant objectives for 20 hours per week while attending classes and full-time during the summer term. Compensation package includes a competitive stipend, opportunities to travel to and present research at professional meetings, and engage in a range of hands-on learning opportunities. Research areas include:  Production Systems, Extension Activities, Recirculating Systems, Aquatic Diseases, Aquaponics, Nutrition, Genetics, Economics, and Marketing

You can find out much of what you need to know about our research and academic programs by visiting our website at:

Application procedures for graduate studies and required forms are available at:



Dr. Jim Tidwell Discusses the Role Aquaculture Will Play in the Future on Global Connection Television

Dr. Jim Tidwell, Kentucky State University's Division of Aquaculture Chair, discusses the role that aquaculture will play in the future in providing food supplies, given that the oceans are overfished and the population is expanding dramatically. October 27, 2018

Click the link below to view the interview!



Presentations (Video and pdf.) from the Indoor Shrimp Farming Workshop held on September 14-15, 2018 for Download

Indoor Shrimp Workshop Banner

Below are video and pdf. presentations from the September Indoor Shrimp Farming Workshop held at Kentucky State University. These presentations are available for download. Audio versions of the presentations are linked to our YouTube channel. The links for each presentation are listed below their title and the link listed below goes to the main Kentucky State Universtity Aquaculture YouTube channel. All Indoor Shrimp Farming Workshop Audio presentation can be found by selecting the playlist.

Kentucky State University Aquaculture YouTube Channel

"Small Farmers Opportunities for Direct Marketing to Consumers & Retailers in Kentucky" - Angela Caporelli

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Angela Caporelli

"Biosecurity & Health in US Indoor Shrimp Farming" - Arun K. Dhar, Ph.D.

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Arun K. Dhar, Ph.D.

"Perspectives on Intensive, Marine Shrimp Production Using Minimal-Exchange Indoor Systems" - Douglas H. Ernst, Ph.D.

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Douglas H. Ernst, Ph.D.

"U.S. Perspectives on Postlarval Quality and Availability" - Eduardo Figueras & Lorenzo Juarez

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Eduardo Figueras & Lorenzo Juarez

"U.S. Shrimp Aquaculture in Global Perspective" - Darryl E. Jory

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Darryl E. Jory

"System Engineering and Facilities Design" - Ron Malone, Ph.D.

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Ron Malone, Ph.D.

"Indoor Shrimp Production: Economics & Marketing" - Kwamena Quagrainie, Ph.D.

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Kwamena Quagrainie, Ph.D.

"Introduction to Indoor Shrimp Farming and KSU Aquaculture" - Andrew Ray, Ph.D.

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Andrew Ray, Ph.D.

"Mineral Balance and Shrimp Performance" - Luke A. Roy, D. Allen Davis, and G.A.H.S. Chathuranga

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Luke A. Roy, D. Allen Davis, and G.A.H.S. Chathuranga

"Management of Indoor Shrimp Culture in Biofloc Base Systems" - Tzachi M. Samocha

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Tzachi M. Samocha

"European Shrimp RAS Systems and Management Strategies" - Bert Wecker

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Bert Wecker

"Practical Experiences in Marketing Shrimp in the US" - Robin Pearl

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Robin Pearl

"Optimizing Feed Programs for Profitability" - Craig L. Browdy

Click Here For Audio Presentation: Craig L. Browdy



Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Program Featured on KET's Kentucky Life




Kentucky State University Students, Researchers Bring Shrimp From The Blue Sea To The Bluegrass

WDRB 41 Louisville News 

Click the Link Below to Read the Full Article by Jessica Bard




U.S. Farm-Raised Fish and Shellfish Publications Available for Education and Promotion

U.S. Farm-Raised Fish and Shellfish Publications
Available for Education and Promotion
The National Aquaculture Association (NAA) has developed a variety of fact-based, high-quality, full-color and reader-friendly brochures. These publications communicate to consumers, buyers, chefs or health care professionals the quality, value and wholesomeness of U.S. farm-raised fish and shellfish as well as the federal and state regulations that govern production, handling and processing.

Locally Farmed Seafood: Safe & Sustainable encourages consumers to buy locally farmed fish and shellfish for their safe, wholesome and nutritious benefits, environmental sustainability, and the positive impact on local economies.

U.S. Farm-Raised Seafood and Food Safety describes non-voluntary and voluntary federal and state food inspection and safety programs and the incredible nutritional values of farm-raised fish and shellfish.

U.S. Farm-Raised Fish and Shellfish Q&A answers commonly asked water quality, sustainability, drug and chemical use, diet and food safety questions with science and regulatory facts.

U.S. Farm-Raised Fish and Shellfish for a Healthier & Happier Life provides in-depth nutritional information for children, teens and adults as well as the health benefits of consuming fish and shellfish during pregnancy. The facts concerning Omega-3 fatty acids, mercury and PCBs are also presented.

United States Aquaculture: Fact & Fiction corrects erroneous perceptions concerning fishmeal, food safety, drug and chemical use, Omega-3 fatty acids, mercury, environmental effects, sustainability, PCBs, and eco-labels.

Farm-Raised in the USA is a poster 34 fish and shellfish farmed in the United States. Each species is depicted in full-color and identified by market, scientific and common name.

Each of these attractive, educational publications can be previewed at: http://thenaa.net/publications. Call or email the NAA office at 850-216-2400 or naa@thenaa.net to order copies for public or promotional events, buyer meetings, or mail-outs.



2016 Aquaculture Webinar Series Available

The U.S. Aquaculture Society (USAS), North Central Regional Aquaculture Center (NCRAC) and National Aquaculture Association (NAA) produced an aquaculture webinar series during 2016 that features 14 current and timely aquaculture topics presented by knowledgeable speakers. The webinars were:

  • Aquaponics - How to do it yourself!
  • Mandatory Inspection of Fish of the Order Siluriformes
  • Labeling Requirements for Siluriformes Fish and Fish Products
  • What You Need to Know About Biosecurity
  • How to Design Your Biosecurity Plan
  • Recreational Fish Pond Management
  • The HACCP Approach to Prevent the Spread of Aquatic Invasive Species by Aquaculture and Baitfish Operations
  • U.S. Farm-Raised Finfish and Shellfish 101
  • Regulatory Costs of U.S. Aquaculture Businesses
  • Branding Opportunities for Oyster Farmers
  • Seafood in the Diet: Benefits and Risks - Farm-Raised and Wild
  • Use of Veterinary Feed Directive Drugs in Aquaculture
  • Social Media: An Introduction for Successful Use
  • Fish Health: What You Need to Know as an Aquaculture Producer

To access these webinars, visit http://thenaa.net via your desktop computer or mobile device and select "Webinars" from the menu.

The NAA website is packed with information. Please explore NAA's webpages to find downloadable publications, Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), Kids Corner, recipes, video interviews describing aquaculture sustainability and the value and benefits of seafood to human health, and a wealth of additional information. If there is a topic that is missing, please contact the NAA office at 850-216-2400 or naa@thenaa.net.



Certificate Degree in Aquaculture/Aquatic Sciences

Certificate Degree in Aquaculture/Aquatic Sciences

In the United States over 90% of the seafood consumed is imported. Aquaculture is now the world's leading provider of seafood and the fastest growing segment of world agriculture. The Division of Aquaculture is KSU's Program of Distinction and is highly regarded in both research and academics. KSU offers more online aquaculture courses than any university in the U.S. A Certificate Degree in Aquaculture/Aquatic Sciences can be earned by completing 12 hrs of Aquaculture (AQU) courses, with a grade of "C" or better, within five years of beginning the initial course work. Courses can be online, classroom, or any combination. To enroll, students must first be admitted to the University on either a degree seeking or non-degree seeking basis. Work completed for the Certificate Degree may later be applied toward the Bachelor of Agriculture, Food, and Environment (AFE) degree.

Aquaculture/Aquatic Sciences Certificate Program

The Certificate Degree in Aquaculture/Aquatic Sciences will require a minimum of 12 credit hours of course work chosen by the student from the Division of Aquaculture offerings (AQU prefix). These can either be classroom or online classes. Only classes in which students receive a "C" or better will count toward the Certificate Degree. These classes can also count toward the Aquaculture Systems option for the B.S. in Aquaculture, Food, and Environment (AFE) and/or the Aquaculture Minor should the student pursue a high degree.

Available Online Courses
To earn the Aquaculture/Aquatic Sciences Certificate entirely online, you must complete four (Students choice) of the following online courses:

AQU 407: Fish Genetics

AQU 411: Fish Diseases

AQU 422: Principles of Aquaculture

AQU 427: Fish Reproduction & Spawning Techniques

AQU 451: Survey of Production Methods

AQU 452: Aquaponics

AQU 460: Water Quality Management


Click Here For The Full Brochure




Foodchain Aquaponics


This video discusses aquaponics at Foodchain, a local business located in Lexington, KY.


Constructing Fish Tanks in High Tunnel Greenhouses


This video was shot at the Kentucky State University High Tunnel Complex. High tunnels are relatively simple greenhouse structures commonly used to extend the growing season of crops. In this video Dr. Andrew Ray describes some large fish tanks that have been constructed with wooden frames and rubber liners. The fish tanks are being used to grow tilapia, with the goal of getting market-sized fish in one growing season in Kentucky. Time-lapse and underwater video footage help to illustrate Dr. Ray's points.


Dr. Boris Gomelsky Publishes Video On Koi Breeding



Dr. Boris Gomelsky and KSU Aquaculture graduate students spawned koi in the hatchery this Spring. Video was recorded, edited and posted onto YouTube. This video demonstrates the process of koi artificial breeding and includes stripping of eggs and sperm from koi broodstock, and artificial fertilization of eggs. In order to remove adhesiveness, after fertilization eggs are placed in McDonald incubation jars where they are vigorously moved in water/milk suspension by air bubbles for 50-60 minutes. Then air flow is substituted with water flow for further incubation of eggs.

Video edited by Charles Weibel



Scale-Transparency and Red-Eye Mutations in Koi


Dr. Boris Gomelsky, KSU Aquaculture Professor, describes two mutations in koi and demonstrates mutant fish from experimental progenies.

Video edited by Charles Weibel



Growing Marine Shrimp in a Biofloc System


This video was shot during a harvest of the indoor marine shrimp production system at Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Research Center. Dr. Andrew Ray describes some of the benefits and concepts behind biofloc-based aquaculture. The video serves as an introduction to this relatively new and exciting topic which can be used to grow marine shrimp in practically any building, allowing fresh, whole, jumbo shrimp to be grown near and sold to a variety of inland markets.


Dr. Jim Tidwell on GCTV with Bill Miller


Dr. Jim Tidwell, Chair of Kentucky State University's Division of Aquaculture and past-president of both the US Aquaculture Society and the World Aquaculture Society, discusses how to deal with dwindling fish supplies and overfishing.


Alltech-KSU Research Alliance Focus on Aquaculture Sustainability



To learn more about aquaculture & agriculture sustainability and the research alliance between Alltech and Kentucky State University, click on the link below.











Aquaculture Online Courses

Pink Button Water Quality Management
Water chemistry as it relates to aquaculture and recreational pond management.


Brown button Fish Reproduction & Spawning Techniques
This course includes recorded lectures and practical demonstration videos. Instructor: Dr. Boris Gomelsky

Green ButtonFish Genetics
Emphasis is on practical applications in Aquaculture and Fisheries. Instructor: Dr. Boris Gomelsky boris.gomelsky@kysu.edu

Blue ButtonPrinciples of Aquaculture
This Internet class features video lectures over PowerPoint slides. Instructor: Dr. Jim Tidwell james.tidwell@kysu.edu

red button Fish Diseases
This course taught by Dr. Robert Durborow


Yellow Button Survey of Production Methods
This Internet class features video lectures over PowerPoint slides. Instructor: Dr. Jim Tidwell james.tidwell@kysu.edu




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