Addition of dissolved nitrogen and dissolved organic carbon from wild fish faeces and food around Mediterranean fish farms: Implications for waste-dispersal models

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Title: Addition of dissolved nitrogen and dissolved organic carbon from wild fish faeces and food around Mediterranean fish farms: Implications for waste-dispersal models
Authors: Fernandez-Jover, Damian | Sanchez-Jerez, Pablo | Bayle-Sempere, Just T. | Carratalá, Adoración | Leon, Victor M.
Research Group/s: Biología Marina | Residuos, Energía, Medio Ambiente y Nanotecnología (REMAN) | Recursos Hídricos y Desarrollo Sostenible
Center, Department or Service: Universidad de Alicante. Departamento de Ciencias del Mar y Biología Aplicada | Universidad de Alicante. Departamento de Ingeniería Química
Keywords: Ammonium | Aquaculture | Dissolved organic matter | Farm-waste dispersal | Leaching | Wild fish
Issue Date: Jan-2007
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology. 2007, 340(2): 160-168.
Abstract: Leaching of ammonium (NH4+) and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) from food pellets used at three fish farms in the Mediterranean Sea and the faeces of four different species of farm-associated wild fish (Trachurus mediterraneus, Mugil cephalus, Trachinotus ovatus and Boops boops) were determined. They were placed in seawater and agitated slowly (5 cm s− 1) to reflect natural conditions during their fall to the sediment. Two temperatures were tested, 25 °C and 15 °C, to assess the influence of seasons on leaching rates. Leaching from fish faeces was generally higher compared to food pellets. T. mediterraneus faeces leached more NH4+ and DOC than M. cephalus, T. ovatus and B. boops. The results showed that there is an important addition of NH4+ and DOC to the water column during sinking of the faeces and that this is species-dependent. Water turbulence and faeces composition seemed to have a higher influence than temperature on the leaching process. Due to the high abundance and biomass of farm-associated fish in the Mediterranean and their capacity to remove waste, they appear to be an important component for models that predict the impact of aquaculture. Large biomasses of wild fish at fish farms may reduce the impact on benthic systems but increase the nitrogen and carbon loads into the water column, affecting the pelagic system and modifying the spatial dispersion of wastes.
Sponsor: The study forms part of the ACUFISH project (Unidad de Biología Marina, University of Alicante) and was funded by Spanish Ministry of Science grant MYCT-REN2003-00794. [RH]
ISSN: 0022-0981 (Print) | 1879-1697 (Online)
DOI: 10.1016/j.jembe.2006.09.001
Language: eng
Type: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Rights: © 2006 Elsevier B.V
Peer Review: si
Publisher version:
Appears in Collections:INV - REMAN - Artículos de Revistas
INV - BM - Artículos Científicos / Scientific Papers
INV - Recursos Hídricos y Desarrollo Sostenible - Artículos de Revistas

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