Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


Research delivers encouraging signs for oyster industry

media release

For immediate use

Latest research delivers encouraging signs for oyster industry ahead of AGM

A collaborative research programme to breed oysters resilient to a virus that three years ago devastated New Zealand’s Pacific oyster industry is starting to deliver promising results.

Scientists at Cawthron Institute, together with industry partners, have been working towards breeding Pacific oysters resilient to the ostreid herpes (OsHV-1) virus that almost wiped out the country’s Pacific oyster stocks in 2010.

Cawthron Institute has today reported promising results from the latest research trials which it will present at the New Zealand Oyster Industry Association AGM this weekend (6 July).

“We have identified oyster families with a very high survival rate when exposed to the oyster virus, which decimated stocks in 2010,” Cawthron Institute Chief Executive Charles Eason says. “These recent findings are most encouraging. They suggest that selective breeding has great potential to address the current crisis.”

Professor Eason says while the latest results are encouraging, there is still a lot more work to be done.

“There are still further trials to go,” Professor Eason says. “These are very encouraging preliminary results for our long-term breeding programme, highlighting that through a combination of improved genetics and husbandry, promising outcomes may be achieved in a very short time frame.”

Cawthron Institute scientists have been researching the resilience of Pacific oysters to the virus since 2010 when it first hit New Zealand. The virus caused 90 percent losses in the wild caught spat the industry heavily relied on for its marine farm stocks. The crisis led to job losses, factory closures and saw an overall drop in production of 50 to 60 percent, with some individual farmers hit significantly harder.

When the virus hit, Cawthron Institute was already involved in a joint research project with industry partners into breeding of oyster spat.

“When the virus hit we all worked together to address this problem,” says Cawthron Institute Cultured Shellfish Programme Leader Nick King. “We could not have got this far without the

huge support we have received from our industry partners, in particular Pacific Marine Farms - a subsidiary of Aotearoa Fisheries Limited, and Te Matuku Bay Oysters, who managed the bulk of the on-farm trials. It is truly a joint effort.”

Cawthron Institute Aquaculture Manager Dr Jacquie Reed says the research and farm trials indicate that a combination of genetic improvement through breeding, and improved farm husbandry - such as by growing oysters to a larger size and age before exposure to the virus, makes a big difference in terms of oyster survivorship and a return to viable production.

“We’re hoping these new breeding strategies will help us achieve genetic gains in a relatively short time frame,” Dr Reed says. “We are fully aware that timing is critical in times of crisis, and the industry needs fast results to survive.”

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Interest Rates: Wheeler Hikes OCR To 3% On Inflationary Pressures, Eyes Kiwi

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler lifted the official cash rate for the second time in as many months, saying non-tradable inflationary pressures were "becoming apparent" in an economy that’s picking up pace and he's watching the impact of a strong kiwi dollar on import prices. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Equity Crowd Funding Carries Risks, High Failure Rate

Equity crowd funding, which became legal in New Zealand this month, comes with a high risk of failure based on figures showing existing forays into social capital have a success rate of less than 50 percent, one new entrant says. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: NZ Migration Rises To 11-Year High In March

The country gained a seasonally adjusted 3,800 net new migrants in March, the most since February 2003, said Statistics New Zealand. A net 400 people left for Australia in March, down from 600 in February, according to seasonally adjusted figures. More>>

ALSO:

Hugh Pavletich: New Zealand’s Bubble Economy Is Vulnerable

The recent Forbes e-edition article by Jesse Colombo assesses the New Zealand economy “ 12 Reasons Why New Zealand's Economic Bubble Will End In Disaster ”, seems to have created quite a stir, creating extensive media coverage in New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

Thursday Market Close: Genesis Debut Sparks Energy Rally

New Zealand stock rose after shares in the partially privatised Genesis Energy soared as much as 18 percent in its debut listing on the NZX, buoying other listed energy companies in the process. Meridian Energy, MightyRiverPower, Contact Energy and TrustPower paced gains. More>>

ALSO:

Power Outages, Roads Close: Easter Storm Moving Down Country

The NZ Transport Agency says storm conditions at the start of the Easter break are making driving hazardous in Auckland and Northland and it advises people extreme care is needed on the regions’ state highways and roads... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news