Aquaculture is a business! Production numbers are important to producers and consumers alike. Every spring, the North Carolina Aquaculture Association hosts the NC Aquaculture Development Conference (NCADC) to review the status of the industry in NC, go over aquaculture innovations, and network with feed and equipment representatives. The production numbers on this poster, made for the NCSU College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) Football Day, are drawn from the 2018 NCADC Update (i.e. 2017 production numbers).
Growth studies are conducted on campus (Raleigh, NC) year round with a group of fish from each spawning season’s year class. Juvenile fish are harvested mid-summer from the major NCSU aquaculture site (Pamlico Aquaculture Field Laboratory, Aurora, NC) and brought to a facility on campus to be fed ad libitum and sampled (TL, wet weight, fin clip) every four months to monitor growth. The most current growth study of striped bass ended in October 2018. A set of samples from this group is currently being processed to complete transcriptomic and metabolomic analyses of differences between larger and smaller striped bass.
Histology: Studying the white muscle of hybrids and pure striped bass (Fiji/Image J software) has shown indication of differences in growth between smaller and larger fish. Most teleost growth is due to hypertrophy, the increase in muscle fiber size (measured here as diameter, μm), rather than an increase in the number (amount) of cells (hyperplasia). Interestingly through our histological analyses, we have found that smaller fish muscle tends to demonstrate hypertrophic growth, whereas larger fish muscle tends to show hyperplasia (the recruitment of a higher amount of muscle fibers, but with lower fiber diameters).