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Nathan Cochran
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Kala-Mallik Meesala Master's Defense

Click Here for Zoom Presentation on December 10 @ 9am


Kentucky Aquaculture Association 2021 Annual Meeting & Membership Drive

Click Here For KAA Membership Input Survey


Ultrasound Imaging and Histology Sampling for
Graduate Student Jasmine Iniguez's Thesis Research

Jasmine Iniguez, Jeffrey Warner, and Dr. Noel Novelo obtained ultrasound images and preserved ovarian samples for histology to complete data collection for Ms. Iniguez's thesis research. The topic of her thesis is: 'Ultrasound Imaging Diagnostics of the Reproductive Organs of Adult Nile Tilapia Oreochromis niloticus'. A total of 12 females were euthanized. Weight (g) and total length (cm) were recorded for each fish. All females were examined using the EVO II Ultrasound Scanner (E.I Medical
Imaging, Loveland, CO, USA) and ultrasound images were saved based on the fish's PIT tag (microchip) number. A cut was placed directly above the section of the skin on which the ultrasound probe was positioned. This incision was used to identify the corresponding probe placement and ultrasound penetration on the ovary. Fish were dissected, and the right ovary closest to the ultrasound probe was marked at the corresponding probe placement with a scalpel. The length (mm), weight (g), and diameter (mm) of each ovary were recorded. Ovaries were placed in 10% neutral buffered formalin for fixation for histology processing.

The ultrasound images and histology will inform ultrasound image interpretation for evaluation of ovarian reproductive condition in Nile Tilapia. An interpretation guide will be created based on ultrasound images and corresponding histology. This guide will assist in improved efficiency of broodstock management for evaluation of reproductive condition for spawning and spawning synchronization in the future.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Team Semmens's Collect Data on Channel Catfish From in Pond Raceway

Dr. Semmens and his crew collected production information from Raceway one, (RW1), one of three raceways equipped with three different devices described in the attached handout.

Raceway 1 – Grid Airlift with 1 HP regenerative blower
Raceway 2 – Aerator propeller pushing water horizontally through the raceway, variable speed operated at 0.5 and 0.75 HP
Raceway 3 – Aerator propeller pulling water through the raceway, 0.25 HP.

These Channel catfish were generated from spawning cans in the same pond as the raceways. They
collected the following information from the fish in RW1.
· Total weight
· Average weight
· Total number
· Length frequency information to determine size variability.

This information will compliment data on energy consumption, water quality, feed consumption, and
other data collected in 2021.

Floating Raceway

Raceways are commonly used to grow trout. They are concrete channels with water flowing through them. A screen on either end prevents the fish from moving up or down stream. Floating raceways apply this principle with water from a pond and may be used to grow other fish like catfish, bass, etc. Water is pushed through a channel and the inlet and outlet are screened to retain fish. Since it is not pumped or lifted above the water surface a large volume of water can be moved with a small energy investment. Water entering the raceway carries oxygen required by the fish, and water leaving the raceway removes waste. It is managed like an aquatic feed lot. Fish are stocked in the raceway, fed, and harvested when they reach a marketable size. Below is a diagram showing the elements of a floating raceway.

This project is based on the premise that floating raceways represent an opportunity for
the small farmer to practice aquaculture and place existing impoundments into profitable
production. It is based on the fact that many bodies of standing water cannot be drained, yet
are able to support a crop of fish. Floating raceways confine the fish so they can be efficiently
managed and easily harvested. Unlike a cage, relatively large quantities of fish can be grown in
a single unit. Unlike a pond with no drain, the fish can be protected from predators and some or
all the fish can be recovered at any point in time by a crew of one or two people. This feature
gives the small farmer flexibility to take advantage of niche markets and their premium prices,
or to market the entire group of fish live.
Demand for local food presents an opportunity for the small aquaculture producer. Fish
remain a novel product in this growing market. There is also demand for live fish for recreation.
Locally grown farm raised fish present an advantage if they are distributed live and processed
shortly before sale. The product can be uniformly and uniquely as fresh as possible – something
that is nearly impossible with supply chains associated with imported seafood or large-scale
production where product is transported in frozen form to grocery stores before it is purchased
by the consumer.
In this project supported by a grant from USDA/NIFA, aquaculture investigators at
Kentucky State University are collaborating with engineering investigators at the University of
Kentucky to evaluate the devices and back-up power sources to move water and improve this
technology. Alternatives to the grid airlift include an aerator motor with propeller oriented
horizontally, and a slow rotational paddlewheel.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Josh Dusci's Thesis Research is Published in the

Journal of World Aquaculture Society

Josh Dusci's thesis research has been published. His co-authors are Janelle Hager, Shawn Coyle, and his Major Professor, Dr. James Tidwell. Check out the link below to learn about the affects of prawn on solids accumulation within the hydroponic troughs of aquaponic systems.



David Fox Defends His Thesis Research

David Fox successfully defended his Master's thesis, "Expression of sex chromosome-linked DNA markers in Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) strains and inter-strain crosses" on November 5, 2021.

Currently David works at a private koi farm in Florida. Great Job David! Major Professor: Dr. Boris
Gomelsky Advising Committee members: Dr. James Tidwell, Dr. Kirk Pomper, and Dr. Noel Novelo.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Faculty and Staff Tour Kentucky Marine Shrimp Farms

Faul Family Riverside Farm, Henry County

Dr. Ray led a small team of Extension professionals through a tour of two Kentucky marine shrimp farms; one in Fayette County and another in Henry County. The Fayette County farm has been operating for almost four years, and is using a renovated tobacco barn in which they constructed an insulated room for growing these warmwater animals. The Henry County farm recently finished construction of a new insulated building dedicated to growing shrimp. Each farm has received a Small Farms Grant through KSU in the past. The team asked about production, possible issues that the farms experience, and gave the farmers information on ways that KSU can work with small farmers.

Rolling Blue Farm, Fayette County


Visual Inspection of External Morphology and Ultrasound Imaging for Sex Identification in Nile Tilapia

The role of sex and sex identification are of vital commercial and biological significance in Nile Tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus and other Tilapia genera and species. The male and female in the Tilapia genus guard the nest and protect the fertilized eggs and larvae in the external environment (nest guarders). The male and females of Sarotherodon genus incubate the fertilized eggs and larvae in their buccal cavity, while in the Oreochromis genus only the female guards the developing embryo and fry in the buccal cavity (mouth-brooders). Sex identification is essential for effective broodstock management, reproductive conditioning, and spawning. The separation of male and females inhibits reproductive behavior and spawning and enables robust body condition and growth (with proper feeding) to build energy reserves required for spawning.

Research at Kentucky State University on genetic improvement in Nile Tilapia growth performance identified a highly productive cross (See https://doi.org/ 10.1111/jwas.12742). The cross was comprised of the Genetically Improved Farmed Tilapia (GIFT) strain as maternal brooders and YY-males as paternal brooders for production of fast growing all-male, and predominantly-male Nile Tilapia. This is important because males grow larger than females (sexual size dimorphism) and in all-male production (as opposed to mixed-sex production) all feed consumed is allocated for growth (not sexual behavior and spawning). As part of our Tilapia Extension Capacity Building Grant, KSU continues to build its genetic resources by obtaining the GIFT strain of Nile Tilapia for crossing with YY males for on farm
growth demonstrations in Kentucky. We collected and recorded data (Dr. Boris Gomelsky) on individual identification (electronic pit tagging) and visual inspection of external morphology for sex identification (Jeffrey Warner), on ultrasound imaging for sex identification (Jasmine Iniguez) for sex identification, and weight and length (Dr. Noel Novelo). The females and males were placed in separate tanks for reproductive conditioning for spawning in early 2022.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Kappa Klub Tour the Aquaculture Research Center

Sixteen students from Leestown Middle School toured Kentucky State University this week and stoped by the Aquaculture Research Center as part of their tour. The young men are part of the Leestown Kappa Klub. Leestown Chapter-Kappa Klub is a program for the educational, occupational, and social guidance of male students in grades 6th-12th.

They met Dr. Ken Thompson, State Specialist for 4-H STEM/Youth Development, at the Hatchery Building where he discussed carp, catfish, and tilapia. Then they traveled to the Production and Technologies Building and met with Chelsea Walling, Aquaculture Extension and Research Associate, where she had fish fry and eggs for the students to view under a microscope. They also got the see the saltwater shrimp system, Red Claw Crayfish, and the Aquaponic system. Mrs. Walling also went over the anatomy of a fish with the young men.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Valorizing Aquaculture Waste Into Bio-Fertilizers and Pet Feed

This is the fourth article in our series on the “circular economy.” This is part of a larger three-part series on sustainable aquaculture intensification in Europe, focused on “precision aquaculture,” “sustainable feeds” and “circular economy.” This work from the GAIN project is funded by the EU Horizon 2020 Fund. Each part in this series takes an introductory glance at the three topics, then explains how outputs from the GAIN project are contributing towards it, including the applicability to industry and governance.

Using circular economy principles, the ability to valorize aquaculture waste will be important as the industry seeks to increase and intensify production in sustainable ways. The GAIN project worked with Waister to innovate solutions that create valuable bio-fertilizers and biogas substrates and even potentially pet feed ingredients from fish side streams.

Click Here For Full Article


Growing lobsters and tropical fruits at home:

"The market is asking for an aquaponic system as ours"

“We believe that not just Luxembourg, but most of the world is both ready and asking for a system such as ours,” says Manuel Arrillaga with Fësch Haff in Luxembourg. Together with his co-founder Daryl Fuchs, he recently launched a start-up company with the aim of farming both vegetables and fish in a sustainable manner. Fuchs and Arrillage met at university, and although both have different areas of expertise - materials science versus bio-engineering - they decided to start their aquaponics journey together.

Click Here For Full Article



USAS Sub Chapter Students From Kentucky State University Assist Aquaculture Farmer

Kentucky State University Aquaculture students traveled to La Grange Kentucky to assist Rocky Allen with seining his aquaculture ponds. They seined about 1,500 Largemouth bass as well as other fish including Bluegill, Crappie, and other miscellaneous Sunfish. Rocky had not seined that pond for about two years and wanted an inventory of what was left in the pond. He will also use these fish to fill any orders for people inquiring about live fish. Dr. Noel Novelo, John Kelso, Uchechukwu Ohajiudu, and Michelle Loftus made the trip to La Grange to assist Mr. Allen.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Students in the Physiology and Morphology Course Conduct a Fish Transport Lab

In this lab exercise, students in Dr. Semmens's AQU 412/512 class observed the stocking methods, water quality, blood glucose, and oxygen depletion, associated with transporting fish in a hauling tank. A hauling tank with two compartments was filled with water and water depth was measured before fish were stocked. Oxygen was supplied to both compartments at the same flow rate. Also samples of water was taken to test for total ammonia nitrogen, alkalinity, pH, unionized ammonia, dissolved oxygen and temperature.

A sample of the largemouth bass were weighed to obtain an average weight and estimate the total number of fish stocked. A blood sample was taken from four fish beforestocking the hauling tank and tested to measure glucose. Fish were stocked into one compartment of the hauling tank and the water level was measured again to show the volume of fish that was loaded. Water quality parameters were checked several times over two hours, blood glucose sampled from four fish after two hours.

All data was collected, organized and shared with the class. Students had to calculate oxygen consumption, changes in water quality in both compartments, blood glucose changes in fish and consider stress on fish and mortality risk. Hands-on labs like this are vital because they prepare students for situations and problems they will encounter in the aquaculture industry.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Kentucky State University's USAS Sub Chapter Students Elect New Officials

Kentucky State University Student Sub Chapter of the United States Aquaculture Society (USAS) held elections this week during their meeting. The new officers are:

President: Michelle Loftus
Vice president: Chris Ward
Treasurer: Mark Johannemann
Secretary: Uchechukwu Ohajiudu

Photo by Charles Weibel


2021 Shrimp Pathology Virtual Short Course

Registration Deadline is November 15, 2021

Click Here For Registration


Group Effort Supplies Local Market Demand For Freshwater Prawns In Kentucky

Dan Mooreland has been raising Freshwater Prawns (Macrobrachium rosenbergii) in Kentucky for over 20 years now. Dan's farm is tucked back on a dead-end one-lane road running along the North Fork of the Licking River in Falmouth, KY. It's a beautiful Pendleton County farm, but if you don't know how to get there – you won't find it! The rural location has caused Dan some difficulty over the years in marketing his crop of freshwater prawns, most prawn farmers market direct to the public through on-farm sales the day of harvest. Dan however typically travels to Fall Festivals, and farmers markets. He also uses Kentucky State University's mobile processing unit to clean and freeze his product for sale. Despite the disadvantage of not being in the public eye, Dan has been successful over the years and considers prawn farming profitable. Dan's prawn business profitability is at least in part due to integration of prawn nursery tanks in a converted tobacco barn – partially funded through tobacco settlement funds administered by the Kentucky Agriculture Development Board. "Baby prawns" (called post-larvae) are raised indoors in heated tanks for two months before they are large enough to be stocked into ponds in early June. This nursery phase is like planting 6" tomato plants in your garden as opposed to seeds. The nursed juveniles grow to 3,500% of their "baby" weight during the 60-day nursery period and are about 1.5" long when stocked into ponds.

Dan anticipates 75-80% survival in his nursery tanks. This requires that he initially stocks more post-larvae than he needs to stock his ponds. Some years he has had exceptional survival during the nursery phase, resulting in a surplus of juvenile shrimp ready to go in ponds. Due to the aggressive nature of prawns, if they are not stocked into ponds within two weeks of the target date, losses from cannibalism are severe. In 2020, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Dan came up with a bumper crop of prawn juveniles and he had 10,000 extra juveniles. Dan contacted Kentucky State University (KSU) aquaculture staff to see if they had a need for prawn juveniles as KSU had purchased from him in previous years for research purposes. But research projects were limited at KSU due to the pandemic lock down at the time. KSU reached out to other Kentucky fish farmers through the Kentucky Aquaculture Association (KAA) and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) to assist Dan in finding a market for his extra prawns. Subsequently, Mayer's Fish Farm – which raises largemouth bass for the liveproduct ethnic Asian markets – showed some interest in the prawns as they happened to have a couple of empty ponds that year.

KSU had previously done extensive research exploring the market potential of selling prawns as a live product in ethnic Asian markets in Chicago, New York City, and Toronto, ON and identified the value and the challenges of supplying far away markets. Appreciating that Mayer's Fish Farm had the marketing contacts to identify and supply local Asian markets, after discussions among staff and representatives from KSU, KAA and KDA, a small grant of $1,000 was awarded to Mayer's Fish Farm to purchase Dan's surplus prawn juveniles. The agreement provided that Mayer's Fish Farm would market their prawn harvest through local live haulers supplying ethnic Asian markets in Kentucky with the anticipation that additional markets would be identified which would not only benefit Dan during his prawn harvest in coming years but would also provide an incentive to Mayer's Fish Farm to invest in prawn production and diversify their aquaculture production.

The Mayer's prawn harvest in 2020 went well. They sold over 600 lbs. to a local live hauler who sold them to an Asian grocery store in Lexington. The yellow pages list seven Asian grocers in the Lexington area. Within two days of Mayer's harvest and live prawn delivery through the live hauler, Dan was contacted by a competing Asian grocery. The owners of the grocery store came to Dan's final harvest and bought over 500 lbs. They were so impressed with the product that this year they wanted to buy all of Dan's prawns. In 2021, Dan delivered virtually all his harvest from three ponds live to the Asian Market on three consecutive Fridays in September. The live hauler that Mayer's Fish Farm sold to in 2020 convinced the Mayer's to raise prawns again after insistent demand by their Asian buyer. So in 2021, while Dan supplied one Asian grocer, the Mayer's who had now invested their own money into purchasing 10,000 prawn juveniles from Dan, sold their entire harvest to the same live hauler who marketed them to another Lexington Asian grocer. The Mayer's plan to continue raising prawns as long as Dan has extras. This goes to show that success multiplies. If we work together we all rise.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Dr. Semmens Teaches Blood Sampling and Analysis

Students in this exercise sampled blood from live fish to determine values for blood parameters using a VetScan, and a glucometer. They obtained quantitative measure of blood glucose, electrolytes, blood proteins, and hematocrit from several species. Kristy Allen and Jeffrey Warner assisted with this exercise.

Each team sampled and process blood from three or more fish. Each team also practiced taking blood from a koi before trying other species. Blood samples were analyzed with the VetScan, and glucometer devices based on device availability. The VetScan device took at least 10 minutes to run a sample. Kristy Allen assisted with the Vetscan device and demonstrated how blood was to be loaded into the rotor and how to place the rotor into the device.

Students anesthetized all fish sampled with water and anesthetic (MS-222) until gill movement had slowed. The recommended rate is 150 mg/L, with 2 parts sodium bicarbonate for every gram of anesthetic added to the water. Jeffrey Warner demonstrated sampling by caudal puncture and then assisted students with the method. Blood obtained was placed directly into a heparinized tube and placed on the turntable. Blood was pipetted into a VetScan disk. Blood was also placed onto a glucose meter strip for Analysis. All results were recorded and pooled for class to review and discuss.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Welcome Aakriti Khanal to Kentucky State University

Aakriti is from a small village in Gorkha, Nepal. She got her undergraduate degree i.e., Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from Institute of Agriculture and Animal Science, Tribhuvan University.

For her Master's degree, Aakriti searched online for the best universities with aquaculture programs and determined that Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Research Center was the ideal place for her to continue her education. She is working with the Nutrition Team and her Major Professor is Dr. Rossi. Please give a warm welcome to Aakriti Khanal.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Holy Mackerel! Farmed & Wild Seafood Has One-Sixth The CO2 Emissions Of Beef Because Fish Do Not Require Land Or Fresh Water To Harvest

  • A new study finds farmed and wild seafood and fish have a much smaller carbon footprint than meat or dairy 
  • Carbon emissions associated with wild seafood are a sixth that of beef, a fifth of lamb, and half of cheese 
  • A single burger generates the same amount of CO2 as 9 lbs of wild sardines
  • Salmon and trout used the least land and water while silver and bighead carp had the lowest greenhouse gas levels
  • Overall, farmed seaweed and bivalves like clams and mussels have the smallest environmental impact 


PUBLISHED: 14:47 EDT, 27 September 2021 | UPDATED: 15:15 EDT, 27 September 2021

Click Here For Full Article


Increasing Production Of Aquatic Foods A Win-Win For People And Planet

September 17, 2021—Nutrition researchers have long touted the health benefits of fishsuch as salmon, cod, and herring. But the world’s waterways, from the depths of the oceans to the cutbanks of rivers to tropical reefs, offer up an incredibly diverse bounty of food sources that people around the world depend on.

To better understand the nutritional benefits of the full spectrum of aquatic foods, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s Christopher Golden and colleagues created individual nutrient profiles for more than 3,750 species, ranging from water spinach to clams and cockles to sockeye salmon. The nutrient information is contained in the newly created Aquatic Foods Composition Database, which is open-access and available for download.

The study, published on September 15, 2021 in Nature, determined the top seven categories of nutrient-rich animal-source foods are all aquatic and include pelagic fish (sardines, herring, and other species), bivalves, and salmonids (salmon, trout, and related fish). Sustainably ramping up production and consumption of these foods through aquaculture (or farming in the ocean), supply chain improvements, and better fisheries management is critical to addressing staggering global levels of malnutrition and associated micronutrient deficiencies, Golden said.

Click Here For Full Article


Fish Morphology and Physiology Class Utilize Ultrasound as Part of Their Class Lab

Graduate students participated in interactive lecture and laboratory sessions on ultrasound imaging in aquaculture and fisheries as part of the Fish Morphology and Physiology class taught by Dr. Kenneth Semmens. The information and discussion session was led by Dr. Noel Novelo, ultrasound imaging specialist in the KSU Aquaculture Program, and graduate student Jasmine Iniguez, whose thesis is on developing fish handling and ultrasound imaging procedures for reproductive assessment of Nile Tilapia. Students obtained hands-on experience in ultrasound imaging of different fish species including Channel Catfish, Nile Tilapia, and Ornamental (Koi) Common Carp.

They obtained experience in positioning the probe and handling the fish. They identified different parts of the ultrasound image displayed (position of the probe, the dorsal and ventral aspect of the fish, and the near and far field-of-view). And they obtained cross-sectional images on three planes (transverse, frontal, and sagittal planes).

Ultrasound imaging technology plays an important role in increasing our knowledge and efficiency in management of our cultured and wild fish, and other aquatic organisms. It is safe, and it is particularly appropriate for this reason to use with valuable fish (such as endangered fish or hatchery brooders) for minimal stress and rapid, on the spot assessments.

Safe fish handling procedures is a priority at all times, and it should be integral in sonography procedures. Ultrasound diagnostics in aquaculture and fisheries reproduction is often used to identify sex of fish that would otherwise be undetectable based on their external appearance, and to assess the reproductive condition (ovary and testis development). The information obtained is used to make decisions in aquaculture and wildlife fish hatcheries to increase reproduction efficiency, and to improve management of wildlife fisheries and survival of endangered species.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Blue Grass Home School, Education and Recreational Visit Kentucky State University

Students and their Parents from the Bluegrass Home School, Educational and Recreation visited the Harold R. Benson Research and Demonstration Farm this week. The group included kindergarten, elementary, middle and high school students.

Students got to tour the goats, Paw Paw groves and the in-pond raceways. Dr. Ken Semmens and Dawson Armstrong took the students out on the floating docks to see the floating raceways and explained how this aquaculture system works. It was a beautiful sunny day and they all seemed happy to be outdoors.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Blue Food May Be A Green Way To Feed More People

A new review of the aquatic foods sector, or “blue” foods, shows how fisheries and aquaculture can play a greater role in delivering nutrition and improving food systems around the world.

Five peer-reviewed papers in the journal Nature highlight the opportunities to leverage the vast diversity of blue foods in the coming decades to address malnutrition, lower the environmental footprint of the food system, and provide livelihoods.

People around the world eat more than 2,500 species or species groups of fish, shellfish, aquatic plants, and algae. Together, these foods provide livelihoods and incomes for more than 100 million and sustenance for one billion.

Click Here For Full Article


Mark Johanneman Continues His Education at Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Research Center

Mr. Mark Johannemann is now a student in Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Masters Program. Mark is from Louisville, Kentucky and received his Bachelor's Degree in the Kentucky State University's Agriculture, Food and Environment Program with a concentration in Aquaculture. Mark's Major Professor is Dr. Andrew Ray. Mark wants to do his thesis research work with salt water shrimp.

Photos by Charles Weibel


What is the healthiest fish to eat? The best choices for you and the planet.

(CNN)We're all trying to make healthier choices, but when it comes to fish, is one type truly better than another? Nutritionally, there's no wrong choice when it comes to seafood as a food group.

"As an animal source, it has one of the lowest amounts of saturated fat in relation to protein," said Lourdes Castro, registered dietitian nutritionist and director of the NYU Food Lab. In addition to being a lean protein, seafood is high in D and B vitamins and minerals like iron, potassium and calcium.
Most crucially, seafood is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential to the cellular makeup of our bodies and can help with our cardiovascular health and immune systems. Because the body can't produce its own omega-3s, all our intake must come from the food we eat.
"Our diets typically don't contain a lot of omega-3s," said Mary Ellen Camire, professor of food science and human nutrition at the University of Maine. Eating seafood twice a week is one surefire way to increase our intake of these fundamental fatty acids.

Click Here For Full Article


Fish Morphology & Physiology Students Grade Catfish

There is no substitute for hands-on experience. And last week students in the Aquaculture Fish Morphology and Physiology class acquired some hands-on experience grading Channel catfish with the guidance of their professor PhD Ken Semmens. Many fish are sold by size or grade. Grading fish can increase the market value by supplying the grades or sizes of fish desired by customers. For example, smaller minnows are worth more per pound than larger fish. Most of the fish sold for bait, stocking, or food fish are sold by size or grade. Fish grow at different rates, resulting in of various fish sizes at harvest. Grading can remove the fish not in the size range that processors and live markets are willing to accept.

Also, some fish species are cannibalistic and must be regularly graded to maintain survival rates. Largemouth bass, striped bass and their hybrids, and more are cannibalistic fish. The grading frequency will depend on the growth rate and their size. The first few months post hatch are usually the most important for minimizing losses due to cannibalism.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Graduate Student Uchechukwu Ohajiudu to the
Aquaculture Research Center

Uchechukwu is from Cotonou, Benin Republic in West Africa. He attended the Federal University Of Technology Owerri, and graduated with a Bachelors Degree in Agriculture Technology. Uchechukwu decided to pursue his masters degree after a lot of online research on the best possible school to expand his knowledge in the aquaculture field and decided that the Kentucky State University Aquaculture Research Center's Masters Program was best for him.

Uchechukwu's is already getting his hands wet working with team Semmens and his Major Professor is Dr. Ken Semmens.

Photos by Charles Weibel


The Environmentalist Case for Fish Farms

As California's drought decimates wild fish populations, America should take the lead to ensure an expansion of aquaculture protects marine systems rather than destroying them.

Click Here For Full Article



Floating Raceway Design For Small Farms

Dr. Semmens crew is developing a floating raceway design for small farms and have recently scaled up a suspended design that can be constructed at modest cost on the small farm. It was stocked with 5000 feed trained largemouth bass fingerlings produced by students and staff at the Aquaculture Research Center to obtain preliminary data. We are growing catfish in our other raceways, but bass represent a higher value fish that has not been evaluated in this format. We expect there will be advantages with feeding, and management of the bass, but cannibalism and rapid fish growth are a concern.

The bass were stocked into a raceway with 9 cubic meters of growing space. The raceway frame is 32 feet long and the raceway itself is about Four feet deep and 20’ long with about eight inches of freeboard. The bass stocked in the raceway will be grown out as food fish in other raceways next year. We will assess performance of the bass in the raceway this fall.

Photos by Charles Weibel


African And Asian Fish To Feed On U.S. Grains

The US Grains Council (USGC) is advancing a strategy to promote corn co-products including new high protein distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) to aquaculture producers in the high-potential North African and Southeast Asian regions.

Click Here For Full Article


WHOI, WWF Team Up On Seaweed Farming Research

A leading U.S. ocean science research institution and a prominent international environmental NGO are teaming up to examine sugar kelp farming and how new strains could help the growing seaweed farming industry.

Over the next two and a half years, the Massachusetts-based Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) will conduct two breeding and harvesting seasons, starting this year, on commercial partners’ farms in the Northeast United States. By identifying different strains, they will match specific traits to meet targeted needs, such as taste and texture.

Partners will take part in breeding and nursery practices with the goal of amplifying and testing new kelp varieties jointly developed by WHOI and the University of Connecticut with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy. This research will be funded in part by World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the Bezos Earth Fund.

Click Here For Full Article


Team Ray Kale Winterbor F1 Aquaponics Trial

Dr. Ray’s team harvested a 54-day brackish-water aquaponics trial investigating potential differences between coupled and decoupled systems when growing Kale with Pacific white shrimp. This initial trial reinforced kale’s potential use in brackish water aquaponics, in addition to identifying key issues not found in freshwater. Overall, kale in coupled systems out-performed kale in decoupled systems, particularly in metrics important to farmers (survival, harvest weight). Nitrate reduction was 18.4% in coupled systems and 5.8% in decoupled systems, an important finding that may help shrimp farmers increase long term water use and reduce waste discharge.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Nine Things You Probably Did Not Know About Aquaculture

Many aquaculture producers in the United States don’t raise fish, despite the industry’s popular image of fish farming. In fact, oysters were the most commercially valuable domestic farmed marine species in recent years. In 2017, oyster farmers harvested 36 million pounds valued at $186 million. And clams ranked number two in production value in 2012–2017. Other top U.S. marine aquaculture products include mussels, shrimps, and salmon.  

In recent years, a growing number of entrepreneurs are also turning to kelp to supply sustainable seafood and coastal jobs. 

Click Here For Full Article


USAS Sub Chapter Students From KSU Clean Up at the Yuko-en on the Elkhorn

USAS Sub Chapter Students From KSU Clean Up at the Yuko-en on the Elkhorn

Kentucky State University Aquaculture Graduate Students in the USAS Sub Chapter and the Secretary for the Yuko-En on the Elkhorn Board, Arlene Wilson took time on a Saturday to clean up around the Japanese Koi Garden.

The Yuko-en on the Elkhorn is a four season, five 1/2 acre garden, open daily from dawn to dusk and is free to the public. This garden became the Official Kentucky Japan Friendship Garden by proclamation by the Legislature of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

The goal was to clean up the grounds of the Koi garden, as well as help with the removal of excess plants and algae inside the pond. Kentucky State University Aquaculture Research Center previously donated over 50 koi to assist in cleaning the duckweed in the pond. The volunteers from KSU were Dr. Noel Novelo,, Michelle Loftus, Jasmine Iniguez, Shrijan Bajracharya, James Brown, and Andrew Lohman and his wife.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Aquaponics Light Study At FoodChain

Researchers from KSU Aquaculture Research Center wrapped up the first phase of their light study today. They are using one of FoodChain’s grow beds to examine the efficiency of various grow lights. We love getting to host research like this. Hope the research shines!!!

Photos by Charles Weibel


Michelle Loftus Prepares To Start Her Thesis Research

Michelle's research project will be a growth study examining threonine requirements in Largemouth Bass. Threonine is an essential amino acid (AA) and typically the third most limiting AA in modern aquafeeds.

Miss Loftus and the Nutrition Team will evaluate seven diets with increasing levels of threonine that will be fed twice daily to apparent satiation. The growth trial is anticipated to be run for approximately eight weeks.

Michelle weighed the fish this week and they are ready to be stocked into experimental tanks next week to begin her project.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Alisa Truelove Volunteers at the Aquaculture Research Center

Alisa Truelove attends Stewart Home & School a residential school in Franklin County, Kentucky. She has been working with Dr. Ken Thompson this summer. She is originally from Houston, Texas. Alisa recently got the opportunity to work with John Kelso, Tyler Mckay, and Tiffani Watson in Kentucky State University's Fish Diseases Diagnostic Laboratory, where they conducted a fish health inspection for a central Kentucky aquaculture farmer. They inspected over one hundred fish including largemouth bass, Crappie and Bluegill. Alisa said, "This is a new job experience for me and I'm glad to have this opportunity to work with everyone here." She has also had the opportunity to work with Dr. Rossi's team in the Nutrition Lab.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Summer Transportation Institute Students Visit The Aquaculture Research Center

Twenty-five middle school students, who are taking part in the Summer Transportation Institute Program, toured the Aquaculture Research Center last week. Chelsea Walling, Extension and Research Associate, gave students and their mentors a presentation explaining what aquaculture is, why it is a vital part or agriculture, and how Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Research Center's assist Kentucky farmers and teaches students how to grow aquatic animals and plants.

Students toured the ponds, outdoor tanks, and the Production and Technology Building where they visited the Genetics Lab, Water Quality Lab, Feed Presentation Room and the indoor Recirculating Aquaculture Systems.

Mrs. Walling talked to the STI students about some of the aquatic species at Kentucky State University including Australia Red Claw crayfish, tilapia, koi, and the Aquaponic system. The students were excited to see the crayfish pitch Mrs. Walling.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Aquaculture and the Growth of Land-Based Fisheries

What is something that humans have been doing for almost as long as people have been putting food on the table? While hunting comes to mind, certainly, there is something else that isn’t nearly as intensive and benefits from economies of scale. It is, of course, fishing. Whether it’s used as a metaphor for the value of education, a religious story illustrating compassion, or just something you do to “get away from it all,” fishing is ingrained in our psyche. Indeed, the global fisheries market was $130.0B in 2018 and is expected to grow 19.46% to $155.3B by 2023.

The why behind that increase is the expected growth in fish consumption, which recently reached a record 20.5 kilogram per capita per year and is expected to grow further in the decade ahead to 21.5 kilograms per capita, driving technological advancements in what is known as aquaculture.

Click Here To Read Full Article


AgDiscovery Students Visit The Aquaculture Research Center

The Kentucky State University AgDiscovery (AgD) Program is a two-week, residential program targeting diverse students from limited-resource communities interested in careers in animal science and veterinary medicine.

The USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) partners with various Universities and Colleges to deliver the AgDiscovery program at locations throughout the country. Each University's program focuses on a specific area of interest to our Nation's agriculture such as:

• Plant Health
• Entomology
• Veterinary Science
• Animal Care Biotechnology
• Agribusiness

While at the Aquaculture Research Center the high school students learned how to net, measure, and weigh fish. They also had the opportunity to dissect fish and identify internal and external fish anatomy. They also toured the Genetics Lab, Food Prep-room, and Water Quality Lab.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Team Ray's Kale Winterbor F1 Aquaponics Trial

Dr. Andrew Ray's lab stocked an aquaponics trial with Pacific white shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) and Kale Winterbor F1 hybrid at 15 ppt. salinity using a homemade salt mix. The trial will compare coupled and decoupled systems, with three replicates of each system. Six 1.8 m³ aquaponic systems were stocked at a rate of 300 shrimp per cubic meter (125 shrimp per system), and with 66 kale plants per system.

Kale seeds were germinated in fresh water and acclimated to salt over a 15-day period prior to stocking. The trial will run for six weeks, during which time plant metrics will be measured weekly and water quality measured thrice weekly to monitor nutrient levels. Decoupled systems will be coupled periodically based on a system's nutrient levels and plant performance. This trial will determine Kale Winterbor's performance in brackish water aquaponics systems, and highlight any challenges to shrimp and/or plant production. Results will help facilitate improved protocols in brackish water aquaponics using non-traditional species.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Climate Change is Draining The World's Lakes of Oxygen

Oxygen levels in the world’s lakes are declining because of climate change, according to new research published last week in the journal Nature. Global heating is increasing water temperatures, which reduces the amount of oxygen water can hold. Less oxygen may cause problems for fish and other freshwater wildlife, reports Damian Carrington for the Guardian.

The study analyzed changes in water temperature, clarity and oxygen content for 393 lakes located in temperate climates in North America, South America, Asia and Europe over time. For some lakes, the data stretched all the way back to 1941, but the majority of the records began in the 1980s, reports Kirsti Marohn for Minnesota Public Radio (MPR).

Click Here For Full Article


Jasmine Iniguez is Using Ultrasound Imaging as an Assistive Reproduction Technology for Her Thesis Research on Nile Tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus

Jasmine Iniguez has been collecting data for the first study of her thesis research directed by Dr. Noel Novelo, her major professor. Adult Nile tilapia were placed in three fish positions (ventral recumbency, lateral recumbency, and dorsal recumbency) with the probe positioned on the transverse plane at five frequencies (6, 8, 10, 12 and 14 MHz) at three external anatomical landmarks. The ultrasound equipment used was the EVO II Ultrasound Scanner equipped with a multiple frequency waterproof probe that produces linear array images. Once ultrasound images were saved, fish were euthanized and placed into an ice slurry for a couple hours during rigor mortis. Fish were then placed in the freezer, and the frozen fish were cut on the transverse plane at each landmark with a bandsaw.

The purpose of this study is to develop fish handling and ultrasound scanning procedures for viewing the internal anatomy and reproductive organs in Nile Tilapia. Ultrasonography plays an important role in aquaculture because it can be used as a noninvasive means of assessing reproductive conditions in fish.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Team Ray's Kale Toscano Nitrite Uptake Trial

Dr. Andrew Ray's lab harvested a Toscano Kale trial, investigating the plant's potential to tolerate and uptake nitrite in brackish water conditions. Previous trials on the plant's salt-tolerance yielded 100% survival and promising results for use in brackish water aquaponics.

The current trial examined 10 and 20 ppt. salinities, including treatments with added nitrite at each salinity. Although survival was 100% in the current trial, there were detrimental effects observed on plant growth in treatments with added nitrite. Interveinal Chlorosis, a yellowing of the tissue between the veins of a leaf due to the decline of chlorophyll production, was significant on some plants at 10 ppt.; however, other plants showed no adverse effects with added nitrite. In addition, contorted growth and partial leaf necrosis was observed at 20 ppt. with added nitrite; however, the necrosis may have been enhanced due to salt spray on the foliage.

Toscano Kale shows impressive tolerance to brackish water conditions, and future trials will include aquaponics with reused shrimp water and Pacific white shrimp.

Toscano Kale, also known as Dinosaur Kale, is nutritious, tasty and easy to prepare because both the rib and leaf can be eaten, cooked or raw. It's an excellent source of vitamins A, C, and K and has over 50 percent of the recommended daily allowances for each.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Dr. Gomelsky Presents at the Virtual International
Scientific-Practical Conference

Dr. Boris Gomelsky gave a presentation at the virtual International Scientific-Practical Conference "Aquaculture of the XXI Century - Problems and Perspectives". This conference was organized in Kiev, Ukraine for participants from Eastern Europe. The topic of Dr. Gomelsky's presentation was "Some Aspects of Aquaculture in the United States and Main Directions of Research Performed at the Aquaculture Program of Kentucky State University." Dr. Gomelsky made his presentation in Russian.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Largemouth Bass Workshop Videos

The recorded workshop that Mr. Shawn Coyle and Dr. James Tidwell took part in is now available. The workshop has been broken into four parts, one video for each speaker to make the material easier to access by topic. You will have to watch all four videos to hear the entirety of the panel discussion.

Larval Largemouth Bass Rearing in an Indoor RAS System Presented by Giovanni Molinari, Southern Illinois University Carbondale

Production of Feed Trained Largemouth Bass Fingerlings Presented by Shawn Coyle, Kentucky State University

Largemouth Bass Production: Opportunities and Challenges Presented by Dr. James Tidwell, Kentucky State University

Marketing Trends in Illinois for Foodfish Sales to the Live Market Presented by Paul Hitchens, Southern Illinois University Carbondale


Shrijan Bajracharya Examines the Amylase Activity on His Hepatopancreas Samples

Shrijan has been working on analysis of Amylase activity on the hepatopancreas of the Pacific white shrimp from his thesis research study. Basically, he thawed the samples, cleaved the hepatopancreas in
pieces to homogenise the sample. Next the samples were weighed and extracted with Amylase Buffer following Bio-vision Amylase Protocol. The Bead Mill and Centrifuge were used to extract the supernatant from the samples for analysis. There were total of 48 samples and each sample had its own
background control. Shrijan Bajracharya is a Graduate Research Assistant working under Dr. Andrew Ray.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Mark Johannemann and Dawson Armstrong Graduate from the School of Agriculture, Communities and the Sciences

Mark Johannemann and Dawson Armstrong graduated this spring from Kentucky State University's
School of Agriculture, Communities and the Sciences. Both worked at the Aquaculture Research Center while taking classes.

Mark works with Team Ray. He plans to continue his education at Kentucky State University and is applying for the Kentucky State University Aquaculture Graduate Program.

Dawson works with Team Semmens and took a full time position as a Research Assistant.

Photos by Charles Weibel



Andrew Lohman Awarded 2021 Aquaculture Research Center Outstanding Graduate Student

Andrew Lohman was selected as the 2021 Outstanding Graduate Student at the Aquaculture Research Center. Andrew has finished his thesis research and is in the process of running statics on his data, working on his thesis paper and preparing to defend his thesis. The award is for "Academic Excellence & Leadership," while a graduate student at the Aquaculture Research Center. Aquaculture faculty has a chance to nominate a student. Then the nominations are voted on by the faculty. Great Job Andrew!

Photo by Charles Weibel


David Fox Awarded 2020 Aquaculture Research Center Outstanding Graduate Student

David Fox was selected as the 2020 Outstanding Graduate Student at the Aquaculture Research Center. Due to COVID restrictions, the award was presented to David this week by his Major Professor Boris Gomelsky.

This week was Mr. Fox's last week at the Aquaculture Research Center. He has finished all his classes and his thesis research project. He will continue to write his paper, prepare to defend his thesis, and look for employment in the aquaculture industry. Great job David!

Photo by Charles Weibel


Team Gomelsky & Team Novello Spawn Koi

Dr. Gomelsky's and Dr. Novelo's teams worked together on spawning koi at Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Research Center hatchery this week. The koi progenies that were spawned will be raised in tanks and ponds at the KSU aquaculture facility. Later, part of these fish will be used in demonstration and educational extension projects and in Kentucky high schools Aquaculture Programs. Koi were not spawned last year at the Aquaculture Research Center because of COVID pandemic restrictions.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Kentucky State University and Two Kentucky High Schools Collaborate on a USDA/NIFA Teaching Grant

Jeffersontown High School and Seneca High School in Louisville, Kentucky will partner with Kentucky State University for the next three years after recently securing a USDA/NIFA teaching grant.
The Grant supports Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, (STEM), Education using aquaculture as a teaching and learning tool.

J-Town High School is currently growing Koi carp that were donated by Kentucky State University's Aquaculture Research Center. They used the fish to stock their outdoor pond. Ken Thompson and Chelsea Watts will be assisting these two schools as well as other Kentucky schools with aquaculture and aquaponics education.


Pioneer in aquaculture research named 2021 World Food Prize Laureate

Shakuntala Haraksingh Thilsted, global lead for nutrition and public health at WorldFish, was recently announced the 2021 World Food Prize Laureate for her achievements in pioneering fish-based food systems to improve nutrition, health and livelihoods.

Born in Trinidad and Tobago, Thilsted has spent her career helping develop productive aquaculture practices for small-holder farmers, including pond polyculture systems. She created and helped spread the use of nutritious fish-based foods, such as fish chutney and fish powder — dried fish foods with four times the nutrient density of fresh fish.

Click Here For Full Article


Singapore’s urban farmers seek high-tech solutions to turn waste into resources

SINGAPORE — Thousands of wriggling larvae won’t deter this self-declared “urban farmer.”

Chua Kai-Ning is one of the founders of Singapore’s first urban insect farm, Insectta — a high-tech farm that rears the black soldier fly to help turn food waste into biomaterials for industrial use.

“The black soldier fly is a way to contribute to what we call the circular economy, where we produce things without anything going to waste,” said the 26-year-old, who has a background in English linguistics. Some in Singapore are turning to urban farming in this land-scarce city, as they look for high-tech ways to turn waste into useful resources.

Chua is one of them.

Click Here For Full Article


Andrew Lohman Harvests Research Project

In total 240 plants were harvested. Representative samples for plant height, individual plant weight, and chlorophyll analysis were taken from 80 plants. Surface area of the roots and shoots were recorded as well as the wet and dry weights of the shoots. Andrew is waiting on the results of the nutrient analysis of the shoots. Throughout the study information on the representative plant heights were collected twice a week.

He collected the total fish biomass removed from the tanks and the amount of feed fed over the course of the study. Individual weights and lengths on 4 fish per tank were also taken.

All the lights used were standardised to 200 PAR. The lights used 87 to 125 Watts, which is a much tighter spread of energy consumption than his previous study. The lowest lights consumed 1.23 kWh per day and the highest lights consumed 1.74 kWh per day. Regarding the light spectrum, the
Red:Blue ratio varied between lights with the controls being 6.6, and with the three experimental lights being 1.3-2.5 R:B ratio. The price of the individual lights varied from $100 to $390 for the experimental ones, and the control was $1600.

Andrew still needs to run statistics for the data collected and is waiting to receive nutrient analysis on the shoots and water samples sent out. Andrews Major Professor is Jim Tidwell, Professor and Chair and,KSU Distinguished Professor at the Division of Aquaculture.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Aquaculture Faculty and Staff New Publish New Research Paper

Dr. Boris Gomelsky and Dr. Noel Novelo, and Mr. Shawn Coyle published a new
research paper titled, "Evaluation of growth, sex (Male proportions; sexual
dimorphism), and color segregation in four cross combinations of different
strains o XX female and YY male Nile Tilapia."

Click Here For Full Journal Article


Here Are the Benefits of Farm-Raised vs Wild-Caught Salmon

You know salmon is good for you. But when it comes time to choose at the grocery store, it can be overwhelming. There are a variety of types to choose from, and the advantages and disadvantages are often hotly debated. How can you tell which is better for your health (and the health of the planet)? Should you eat farmed-raised salmon or wild-caught? All food production requires resources that put pressure on the environment, explains Richard Waite, a senior research associate for the food program at World Research Institute. To keep up with the increased interest in seafood while also being efficient with resources, fish farming is a necessity.

Click Here For Full Article


New Sustainable Advances Help Reimagine Fish Farming

Fish farms haven't always had the best reputation, but that seems to be changing fast. Many scientists and chefs believe fish farms may be the future of food due to a combination of factors, including overfishing in our oceans and a global population that keeps rising.

Dr. Kevan Main leads Mote Aquaculture Research Park in Sarasota, Florida. The park is 20 miles away from the ocean but has seawater running through it constantly. The water is recycled and reused 24 hours a day. 

The fish are quarantined when they first arrive. "That is when we first bring them in from the wild. We have to keep them by themselves and have to check them and make sure they're healthy and put them through some treatment," Main told CBS News' Jeff Glor.

At the farm, Main is raising Red Drum, Snook and Almaco Jack. Almaco Jack are also known as Longfin Yellowtail, have very sharp teeth and are also very adaptable. Main originally found the fish about 100 miles out in the Gulf of Mexico. They've been raised to be perfect, healthy large breeders.

Click Here For Full Article


The Salmon You Buy In The Future May Be Farmed On Land

The fish in question are Atlantic salmon, which are far more typically found in the cold waters of Norway's fjords or Scotland's lochs.

As the species is not native to Florida, and would be unable to cope with the state's tropical heat, the water tanks are kept well chilled, and housed in a vast, air-conditioned and heavily insulated warehouse-like building.

The facility, called the Bluehouse, opened its first phase last year, and intends to be the world's largest land-based fish farm.

Targeting an initial production of 9,500 metric tonnes of fish per year, its owner - Atlantic Sapphire - plans to increase that to 222,000 tonnes by 2031, enough to provide 41% of current US annual salmon consumption, or a billion meals.

Click Here For Full Article


Kentucky State University Received $740,000 Grant Funding For Aquaponics Research

The Kentucky State University School of Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences, in the College of Agriculture, Community, and the Sciences, received approval of funding on a grant proposal titled,

"Improving Phosphorus Recovery in Aquaponic Systems through Environmental Manipulation of the Plant Rhizosphere Microbiota."

The project will run for four years with total funding of $740,000. The highly competitive grant program is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), and Agricultural Microbiome in Plant Systems and Natural Resources.

"With the increasing interest in aquaponics in Kentucky, I am thrilled that USDA is supporting this research project, which will greatly benefit our stakeholders in this state and beyond," Dr. Kirk Pomper, dean of the College of Agriculture, Community, and the Sciences and director of the Land Grant Program, said. Dr. Jim Tidwell is the project investigator and Janelle Hager is the lead author on the proposal, with the assistance of Leigh Anne Bright. The project will also involve close cooperation with Dr. Carlos Rodrigue-Lopez and Dr. Mark Coyne of the University of Kentucky.

"Agriculture is increasingly a technology driven enterprise. We see several examples of that right now in Kentucky," Tidwell, professor and chair of the School of Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences, said. "As we try to feed more people with limited resources and to bring the means of production closer to the consumer, controlled environment systems like aquaponics will become even more important in the future. The funding in this grant will allow us to better understand the bacterial transformations essential in these simple, yet complex systems, allowing even greater resource efficiencies as we move forward."

Photos by Charles Weibel


Miss Kentucky Visits Another Kentucky Aquaculture Farm

#MissKYProud Alex Francke and Angela Caporelli visit Crystal Bridge Fish Farm. As part of her responsibilities as Miss Kentucky, Alex Francke will visit schools throughout the Commonwealth as an ambassador for the KDA and Kentucky Proud. Francke will educate students of all age groups about farm safety, agriculture basics, and maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle.

This is 18th Episode in the series #MissKYProud.



Kentucky State University's Aquaponics Production Manual: A Practical Handbook For Growers

The School of Aquaculture and Aquatics Sciences at Kentucky State University is proud to announce the availability of the Aquaponics Production Manual: A Practical Handbook for Growers. This 75 page comprehensive manual covers the biological concepts of aquaponics, types of systems, suitable fish and plant species, systems management, water quality, disease of plants and fish, controlled environments (greenhouse and indoors), marketing and economics, as well information on certification and regulations. It is written at a level to be practical resource for practicing (or potential) aquaponic producers. 




Fishing is a wonderful warm-weather pastime many of us enjoy. At the extension office, we often receive calls in the spring and fall from landowners on how to properly stock recreational ponds with fish.

Pond owners can call farm supply stores during the spring and fall to find out when their live fish trucks may arrive. Fish are typically transported during cool weather to reduce handling stress. The fish are typically small and can be hauled short distances in large, water filled containers.

Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources no longer stocks recreational ponds, but the department recommends the following fish species to establish a balanced fish population that will provide good pond fishing in about two years' time. Bluegill (not hybrid bluegill) and largemouth bass form a predator-prey relationship where the prolific spawning of bluegill provide enough food to support a largemouth bass population. Largemouth bass consume some of the bluegill and control their overpopulation. Two years after you stock a pond, you should have largemouth bass at least a foot long and bluegill at least 6 inches in length. You can catch these fish provided they are stocked and harvested in the proper numbers.

Click Here For Full Article


Miss Kentucky Visits Robert Mayer's Largemouth Bass Fish Farm

Ms. Alex Francke (Miss Kentucky), recently visited Robert Mayer's Largemouth Bass Fish Farm as part of a YouTube series called #MissKYProud. This series is developed by the Kentucky Department of Agriculture and focuses on different Agricultural Production across the state. This video is episode #17 in the series.



Andrew Lohman Starts His Second Trial On LED Lights

Andrew Lohman started his second trial looking at inexpensive light emitting diode, (LED), lights for their use in aquaponic systems. This will be approximately a four week trial evaluating the top four performing LED lights from the preliminary trial study Andrew conducted last November. Andrew is using Buttercrunch lettuce as the plant in the trail, This Buttercrunch lettuce was Developed by Cornell University, this heat-tolerant, Bibb-type lettuce. Tilapia is the fish being used in the research and the average size of the tilapia was 488 grams.

Photo by Charles Weibel


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Dr. Semmens And Team Begin Moving Fish For 2021 Research Projects

Preparations are underway to grow channel catfish in floating raceways with three different configurations in 2021. The first device is a grid style airlift, the most common way to aerate and push water through a floating raceway. A second device using a propeller device pushing water horizontally through the raceway will have oxygen sensors and controls to turn on an aerator as needed. The third device is a smaller solar powered propeller unit with controls to turn on an aerator as

Brood catfish, paddlefish, grass carp, koi carp, bass, and bluegill populate the raceways pond. Cans placed in the pond in 2019 yielded catfish spawn which was hatched and grown to large stocker size in three 0.1 acre ponds the Aquaculture Research Center and stocked in the raceways at the KSU Farm
late in 2020.

This years performance of the three systems will be assessed throughout the growing season. Approximately 4,000 fish, weighing about 0.25 lb each will be stocked in each raceway system for

Photos by Charles Weibel


Shrijan Bajracharya Completes His Research Project

Graduate Research Assistant Shrijan Bajracharya's research project on Pacific White Shrimp lasted 90 days. He did encounter issues with water quality during the study, other than that the overall research went well.

At harvest, Shrijan removed and collected samples of the solids as well as shrimp samples from each tanks. He dried the solids in a oven and grinded them into a powdered and the samples were stored in the freezer for further analysis. The six shrimp samples were dissected and the hepatopancreas was removed, forzen in liquid Nitrogen and then stored at -80°C for analysis at a later date. He will be checking the digestive activity of lipase, amylase, and trypsin.

Shrijan's research has concluded but he still has plenty of work ahead. He has to analyse samples as well as run statics and write his thesis.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Pacific white shrimp dissection: Hepatopancreas Removal for Enzyme Analysis

Jill Fisk demonstrates the dissection and removal of the hepatopancreas from the pacific white shrimp and flash freezing it in liquid nitrogen to preserve samples for enzyme analysis at a later date.



Kentucky State University Aquaculture Research Center Donates Shrimp to
Spark Community Café

Associate Professor Dr Andrew Ray donated over 100 pounds of salt water shrimp to Spark Community Café on March 11, 2021. As a result of Dr Ray's research at the Aquaculture Research Center there are times that extra shrimp are available. Part of Dr Ray's USDA 1890 Capacity Building Grant research project is to donate extra shrimp to Spark Community café.

On March 27, 2019 Spark Community Café opened a pay what you can, pay it forward restaurant. Their goal is to provide good food with dignity for all participants in a community space that educates, entertains, and accepts all who walk through their doors. They provide farm-to-table meals to their guest regardless of their ability to pay.

The Spark Community Café philosophy is "If your pockets are full pay it forward. If your pockets are light pay what you can, if your pockets are empty volunteer your time with us."

The shrimp will be used as part of Spark's food programs in an attempt to get food to parts of the underserved community. Kyle Fannin, Executive Director of Spark Community Café said, "Our goal in the beginning was for 20 percent of the food to go to the food insecured of Woodford County. During the pandemic 2/3 of the food went out to the food insecured." Spark will be serving the shrimp in every way you can imagine over the next few weeks.

Chef Isaiah Screetch and Cook Anna Collins were preparing shrimp Po Boy sandwiches in the kitchen when we arrived and said the Shrimp Po Boys were already a big hit. Anna Collins said, "We spent hours processing the shrimp and her hands were sore." Chef Isaiah was interested in tilapia and other Kentucky grown aquaculture products in the future.


Photos by Charles Weibel


Farming Fish In Freshwater Is More Affordable And Sustainable Than In The Ocean

A tidal wave of interest is building in farming the seas. It's part of a global rush to exploit oceanic resources that's been dubbed the "blue acceleration." Optimistic projections say that smart mariculture—farming at sea—could increase ocean fish and shellfish production by 21 million to 44 million metric tons by 2050, a 36%-74% jump from current yields. Other estimates suggest that an ocean  area the size of Lake Michigan might produce the same amount of seafood as all of the world's wild-caught fisheries combined.

Click Here For Full Article


Why That Salmon On Your Plate Might Have Been A Vegetarian

Twenty years ago, as farmed salmon and shrimp started spreading in supermarket freezers, came an influential scientific paper that warned of an environmental mess: Fish farms were gobbling up wild fish stocks, spreading disease and causing marine pollution.

This week, some of the same scientists who published that report issued a new paper concluding that fish farming, in many parts of the world, at least, is a whole lot better. The most significant improvement, they said, was that farmed fish were not being fed as much wild fish. They were being fed more plants, like soy.

In short, the paper found, farmed fish like salmon and trout had become mostly vegetarians.

Click Here For Full Article


Surprising Side Effects of Eating Fish, According to Science

From salmon to sardines, Atlantic herring to Atlantic mackerel, there are multiple health benefits of eating fish. Packed with protein, vitamins, and minerals, fish is also a low-calorie, zero-carb food filled with polyunsaturated fatty acids, a type of healthy fat that falls under the category of essential nutrients.

It's no wonder fish consumption has been on the rise. According to the latest statistics from the Fisheries of the United States report, which was compiled by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Americans enjoyed an average of 16.1 pounds of seafood per person in 2018.

Click Here For Full Article


NWAC Fall Catfish Seminar Series

If you missed our recent NWAC Fall Catfish Seminar Series, here are links to videos of the presentations. It should be noted that some of these presentations were made at both locations (Stoneville and Starkville) and some were only given at one location.

Aquatic Research and Diagnostic Lab. Summary - Lester Khoo, MSU CVM

Catfish Industry Update and COVID-19 Impact - Jimmy Avery, MSU NWAC

Economic Considerations in Channel Catfish Multiple-Batch Production Practices - Ganesh Karunakaran, MSU NWAC

Recent Fish Health Management Research on Hybrid Catfish - Matt Griffin, MSU CVM

Virulent Aeromonas Research - Brad Richardson, MSU MAFES

USDA Catfish Germplasm Releases: Update and Future Direction - Brian Bosworth, USDA WARU

Update on Fish Diagnostic Lab and Microcystin Research – Larry Hanson, MSU CVM

Treating with Copper Sulfate to Control Snails – Chuck Mischke, MSU NWAC

Understanding Culture Practices and Environment to Grow a Fitter Fish – Peter Allen, MSU WFA


Could land-based seafood production help save our oceans?

Land-based aquaculture can sound like a mirage — shrimp farms in the desert, salmon swimming “upstream” in an alpine village tank, tilapia swishing over the plains. And for a long time, ample production of sea delicacies in recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS) has been more dream than reality. Yet the technology and its innovators have steadily gained momentum and may finally be hitting their tipping point into next-big-thing territory.

The allure of fish grown on land is easy to understand: Like all aquaculture, it reduces demand for wild fish, but unlike sea-based cages, closed-loop RAS farms run no risk of fish escaping to dilute the native gene pool, spread diseases, or discharge waste and antibiotics into the wild. RAS farmers have near full control over growing conditions, so they can optimize for growth and quality. And with its amenability to unlikely locations, RAS can sit near major consumer markets, providing fresh local seafood even when the shore is hundreds of miles away.

Click Here For Full Article


Dr. Ray's Research Team Publishes Research:

"Evaluating a low-cost salt mixture in brackish water intensive shrimp (litopenaeus vannamei) production systems"

Marine shrimp grow well in tanks and recirculating aquaculture systems, making them a great candidate for providing fresh healthy seafood to consumers at inland locations. However, commercially available sea salts can be a substantial expense when growing shrimp inland.

To help overcome this, the Ray Lab conducted an experiment comparing a much less expensive home-made salt mixture to a commercial product. They used five different ratios of low-cost/commercial salt mixtures, including a 100% low-cost treatment.

The experiment resulted in no significant differences in shrimp production using any of the salt ratios, and the cost of salt per kg of shrimp produced was 57% lower using a 100% low-cost salt compared to the commercial product.

Click Here For Full Journal Article


Mark Jonannemann Works on No Media Denitrification Research

The idea of no media denitrification is like that of biofloc, which uses suspended particles of organic matter to provide substrate for beneficial nitrifying bacteria in the water column. However, for denitrification no air is delivered to the tank, creating conditions conducive for facultative anaerobes to reduce nitrate and nitrite into dinitrogen gas.

In this study the effects of four different carbon/nitrogen ratios (5:1, 3:1, 1:1,and no added carbon) are being examined on denitrification of wastewater without a bioreactor from a pacific white leg shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) crop growout. Carbon in the form of 190 proof ethanol (donated from our partner The Jim Beam Company) is added daily to maintain the proper C/N ratio per tank based on the water quality results from the end of the previous week. This is done daily along with parameters including temperature, Dissolved Oxygen (DO), pH, salinity and Oxidation-Reduction Potential, (ORP); while water quality consisting of Total Suspended Solids/Volatile Suspended Solids (TSS/VSS), turbidity, (total ammonia nitrogen) (TAN), nitrite, nitrate, phosphate, alkalinity, and sulfide are analyzed once per week.

The purpose of this study is to gain a better understanding of no media denitrification. This information will be used to help local producers reduce costs by reusing water for more crops.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Could Astronauts Rear Fish On The Moon?

The seabass eggs, all 200 of them, were settled in their module and ready to go. The ground crew had counted the eggs carefully, checked each for an embryo, and sealed them tightly within a curved dish filled precisely to the brim with seawater.

The countdown, and then—ignition! For two full minutes, the precious eggs suffered a riotous shaking as the rocket’s engines exploded to life, followed by another eight minutes of heightened juddering as they ascended to the heavens. These embryonic fish were on their way to low Earth orbit. Next stop: the moon.

Click Here For Full Article



Kentucky State University Aquaculture Course Offerings Through 2025


Shrijan Bajracharya Continues His Thesis Research Project

Shrijan has been working almost six weeks on his thesis research project, "The Effects of System Type, Salt Formulation, and Sugar Additions on Pacific white shrimp(Litopenaeus vannamei) Production, Digestive Enzyme Activity, and Dissolved Mineral Composition." He has about eight weeks until he harvests the shrimp. The total duration of the research project after the nursery phase is about three months. Shrijan samples the weight of shrimp each month and samples of 20 shrimp from each tank were sampled January 13, 2021. The project has kept Shrijan busy with daily feedings, cleaning tanks and monitoring water quality as required.

Photo by Charles Weibel


Michelle Loftus Takes Part in Hybrid Stripped Bass Digestibility Trial

Graduate Research Assistant Michelle Loftus was busy this week working with Hybrid stripped bass, M. chrysops × M. saxatilis at the Aquaculture Research Center's Nutrition Lab. The Hybrid striped bass is a cross of the striped bass (Morone saxatilis) and the white bass (M. chrysops). About ten million pounds of Hybrid stripped bass are produced in the United States annually. The fish are used both as a food fish and a gamefish.

Dr. Rossi's team is working with hybrid striped bass conducting a digestibility trial. The project has been running for about a week now. The trial will most likely run for about 8 weeks.

Photos by Charles Weibel


Koi Production Presentation by Dr. Boris Gomelsky




2022 Census of Agriculture: Your Voice, Your Future, Your Opportunity

The 2022 Census of Agriculture is right around the corner and USDA NASS is making every effort to count all aquaculture producers in the United States.

If you produce any aquaculture products and want to make sure that you are counted in the 2022 Census of Agriculture and the 2023 Census of Aquaculture, please sign up your operation using this online form:


Once you have signed up, you might receive a short survey in the next two years to further categorize your operation. But most likely, you will not receive a survey until the 2022 Census of Agriculture in January or February, 2023.

When signing up, please keep these items in mind to better understand how USDA NASS counts aquaculture production:

To be counted as an aquaculture farm, some form of intervention in the rearing process, such as seeding, stocking, feeding, or protection from predators, must be done by the producer.
Aquaculture is defined as the farming of aquatic organisms, including baitfish, crustaceans, food fish, mollusks, ornamental fish, sport or game fish, algae and sea vegetables, and other aquaculture products.

Fish, shellfish, and other aquatic products which are caught or harvested by the public from non-controlled waters or beds without any intervention, or input costs, are considered wild caught and are NOT included in the USDA NASS count of aquaculture farms.
Remember, participating in the 2022 Census of Agriculture and the 2023 Census of Aquaculture is Your Voice, Your Future, and Your Opportunity. To learn more about the Census of Agriculture and Aquaculture, visit www.agcensus.usda.gov.

All information you provide will be held confidential under penalty of federal law. There is NO sharing of individual farm financial data with other federal agencies other than the final compiled reports that are publicly available. Since NASS surveys are conducted for statistical purposes only, individual reports are protected by law, even from other governmental agencies. Please read and share the NASS Confidentiality Pledge: https://www.nass.usda.gov/About_NASS/Confidentiality_Pledge/index.php.

If you have any questions, contact Tony Dorn at tony.dorn@usda.gov or (202) 690-3223.

On behalf of the National Agricultural Statistics Service and USDA, thank you for your timely response and dedication to U.S. agriculture.

Tony Dorn

U.S. Department of Agriculture | National Agricultural Statistics Service
1400 Independence Ave. SW Rm. 6438
Washington, DC 20250
(202) 690 - 3223 (office)
(787) 485 - 1715 (cell)




Discount Aquaculture Books!

5m Books Ltd are proud to announce a new agreement with the World Aquaculture Society (WAS), bringing to WAS members an enhanced range of 5m's books in aquaculture and related areas. Each book has been selected by WAS to feature on the WAS website, providing a discount off the published price for book orders received through the WAS website.

Simply press ctrl & click on the link for each book below, to take you to full details and ordering information on the WAS website

• Aquaculture Businesses: A practical guide to economics and marketing, by Carole Engle

This exciting new book provides practical guidance and advice, for individuals who are seeking to manage and develop a successful aquaculture business, and for those who wish to refine their existing business. Starting with an overview of the types of challenges faced by managers of aquaculture businesses, the book then presents and contrasts the differences in challenges faced by new, start-up businesses and those that have been in business for many years. This book is a valuable tool for all aquaculture businesses. http://www.was.org/Shopping/aquaculture-businesses-a-practical-guide-to-economics-and-marketing

• Understanding Aquaculture, by Jesse Trushenski

Understanding Aquaculture includes content and case studies drawn from throughout the world, providing information to answer the many questions that are posed by the public about aquaculture and aquaculture products. Aquaculture is critical to food security, both now and in the future, and an informed and supportive public is needed to ensure its potential is fully realised. This book is a valuable resource for students and personnel working across all sectors of the aquaculture industry.

• Largemouth Bass Aquaculture, edited by James Tidwell, Shawn Coyle and Leigh Anne Bright

Largemouth Bass Aquaculture provides comprehensive coverage of all aspects of the farming of largemouth bass, with chapters encompassing all major areas of importance, including: their history, production, environment requirements, reproduction, culture methods, diseases, and major markets.

• Cleaner Fish Biology and Aquaculture Applications, edited by Jim Treasurer

Over 60 scientists review and present knowledge on the biology of the utilised cleaner fish species. The book provides protocols in cleaner fish rearing, deployment, health and welfare. A vital book for those working in the salmon farming industry, where cleaner fish are widely used as part of a strategy of
integrated pest management of sea lice.

• Sea Bass and Sea Bream: A practical approach to disease control and health management, by Pierpaolo Paternello and Niccolo Vendramin

Sea Bass and Sea Bream provides practical advice and awareness of health management and disease control in sea bass and sea bream, the most widely farmed fish in the Mediterranean region.



New Publication on the Evaluation of Growth, Sex (Male Proportion; Sexual Dimorphism) and Color Segregation

Dr. Novelo, Dr. Gomelsky, Shawn Coyle and Alex Kramer have published an article "Evaluation of growth, sex (male proportion; sexual dimorphism) and color segregation in four cross combinations of
different strains of XX female and YY male Nile Tilapia" in the Journal of the World Aquaculture Society.

Four cross combinations of different YY male and female Nile Tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus, strains were evaluated for growth, sex, and color segregation. Red color parental strains included blotched phenotypes. The Genetically Improved Farmed Tilapia (GIFT) was the only dark (wild-type) color parental strain. Fish of the same age and cross were stocked in three replicate tanks for four crosses in one recirculating system for 167 days. Data recorded included feed consumed, body weight, total length, color, sex, and fillet weight. YY males crossed with GIFT females (Cross 2) exhibited superior growth that was significantly different (p < .05) to other three crosses. Male proportions were 79–100%. Only YY males crossed with the LSA female strain (Cross 4) yielded 100% males, but, Cross 4's productivity was inferior to that of Cross 2. Body weight advantage of males over females was 28.7–84.2%. Color segregation indicated that red color trait in Nile Tilapia is autosomal dominant, and black patch coverage was variable. This study showed that different parental strain combinations clearly impact productivity traits, and that YY male technology combined with crossbreeding provide the opportunity for genetic improvement and development of commercially beneficial superior traits in Nile Tilapia.

Click Here For Full Journal Publication

Photos for Charles Weibel




Kasandra Miller Publishes Her Masters Thesis in Aquaculture Nutrition

Kasondra Miller published her Masters Thesis research in Aquaculture Nutrition. Her research is titled "Assessment of total dietary phosphorus requirements of juvenile largemouth bass, Micropterus salmoides, using soybean meal-based diets: Effects on production performance, tissue mineralization, physiological parameters in plasma and intestine and expression of head-kidney genes."

Kasondra currently works for Dr. Waldemar Rossi Jr as a Research Assistant. Funding from the Kentucky Soybean Promotion Board was provided for this research.

Pictures by Charles Weibel



Dr. Andrew Ray's Team Published in Aquaculture Engineering

Click Here For Full Journal Article



Aquatic Weed Control Webinar Now Available on YouTube

Aquatic Weed Control Webinar - Part 1

Dr. Bob Durborow


Aquatic Weed Control Webinar - Part 2

Forrest Wynne



Kentucky State University Land Grant Program

In case you missed our recent announcement, the deadline for the USDA 1890 Scholarships Program has been extended through August 1st! 

This program provides full or partial scholarships for current and new Kentucky State University students, including incoming freshman and transfer students.

Applicants must be interested in pursuing a career in food and agriculture sciences and related fields and working towards a baccalaureate degree in one of the following areas: business, communications, biology, chemistry, child development, computer science, agriculture, environmental systems, or nutrition.

Apply Here



Kentucky State University IBC Aquaponics Build Tutorial




Team Ray Publishes Research in Aquaculture Engineering

The Dr. Andrew Ray's lab recently published a new research paper in the peer-reviewed journal Aquacultural Engineering. The paper is titled "The effects of artificial substrate and stocking density on Pacific white shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei) performance and water quality dynamics in high tunnel-based biofloc systems" and is the first aquaculture study completed in the KSU Organic High Tunnel facility. This study found that increasing density can greatly increase total shrimp harvest weight with minimal impacts on individual performance, decreased nitrate accumulation in the systems due to algal activity, and the feasibility of shrimp production in high tunnels in temperate climates without the use of supplemental heat sources (electric or gas).

Click Here For Full Article


Dr. Ray Collaborates With The University of Arkansas Pine Bluff

Along with collaborators at the University of Arkansas Pine Bluff (UAPB), Dr. Ray published a new manuscript in the journal Aquaculture Reports.

UAPB is a sister institution of KSU; they are an HBCU and have an 1890 Land Grant Program which includes an Aquaculture and Fisheries Program. The manuscript investigates the production of bluegill in several types of aquaculture systems, including biofloc systems.

The results indicate that bluegill are suitable candidates for biofloc systems and may be able to get some nutritional benefits from the plankton found in the water column.

Click Here To Read Full Article


Dr. Bob Durborow Co-Authors Spring 2020 Article from Aquaculture Reports

Dr. Bob Durborow, Interim Assistant Research Director, has co-authored this spring 2020 article from Aquaculture Reports demonstrating that pond aquaculture is beneficial to the environment. The paper summarizes, "In conclusion, the present study contributes to filling data gaps in the understanding of the carbon cycle in freshwater aquaculture carried out in earthen ponds. Atmospheric carbon dioxide represented a high proportion of the carbon inputs, and its absorption by the earthen ponds was consistent throughout the experimental period, whereas carbon gas emissions were negligible."

Click Here For Full Article




Kentucky State University 1890 Scholarships Program

The purpose of the 1890 Scholarships Program is to provide scholarships to support recruiting, engaging, retaining, mentoring, and training of undergraduate students at the 1890 land-grant institutions, resulting in baccalaureate degrees in the food and agricultural sciences and related fields. The scholarships are intended to encourage outstanding students at 1890 institutions to pursue and complete baccalaureate degrees in the food and agricultural sciences and related fields that would lead to a highly skilled food and agricultural systems workforce.





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.



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 201: Fisheries for the Educated Consumer

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

Blue ButtonFisheries for the Educated Consumer
This Internet class features video lectures over PowerPoint slides. Instructor: Dr. Ken Semmens

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


Green ButtonAquaponics
This course will provide an overview of principles and practices of aquaponic production. Instructor: Dr. James Tidwell and Janelle Hager

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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