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Analysis of growth rates of hatchery-reared holothurians (Holothuria scabra) in community-managed aquaculture farms

Supervisors: Aurélie Naudé
Location: desk (UK)
Duration: min 3-6 months

Blue Ventures is leading a pioneering community-based aquaculture project of sea cucumbers, in partnership with a local private company based in the southwest of  Madagascar. This project is one of the Indian Ocean’s first community-based holothurian ranching initiatives, and has now developed a viable business and farming model that is generating significant incomes for the project’s community beneficiaries.

Growth rates of the farmed sea cucumbers have been monitored by project staff and farmers for a number of years, however these data have not yet been subject to rigorous analysis. Project partners now have an urgent need to understand the effects of a number of key variables on farm production, including seasonality, stocking density, and the farming approach adopted (the latter varying between sea cucumber farming groups). There is now a need to critically analyse these data and identify what key findings can be drawn from data gathered to date. This project will play an important role in communicating the experiences of best practice in H. scabra farming learned through this project within the scientific literature. These tools will improve the management of the farms and increase their productivity and efficiency.

Independent research projects (2013-2014) - Madagascar

Independent research projects (2013-2014) - Belize