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Biofouling of fish-cage netting: Efficacy and problems of in situ cleaning


Hodson, SL and Lewis, TE and Burke, CM, Biofouling of fish-cage netting: Efficacy and problems of in situ cleaning, Aquaculture, 152, (1-4) pp. 77-90. ISSN 0044-8486 (1997) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1016/S0044-8486(97)00007-0


The rapid biofouling of fish-cage netting in Tasmania, Australia, necessitates the frequent changing of nets for on-shore cleaning. To reduce the cost associated with this capital- and labour-intensive process, a prototype underwater net cleaner was designed and constructed for the Tasmanian Atlantic salmon industry. This study describes trials aimed to determine the efficacy of this prototype, and to identify areas for improvement. The reduction in open area of netting mesh due to fouling growth, together with subsequent increases in open area after cleaning, were monitored by image analysis of underwater photographs. The preferential removal of larger fouling species and the occurrence of resistant species were documented. The design of the cleaning head and displacement of netting away from the cleaner reduced the severity of scrubbing, limiting fouling removal. However, with increased contact between the brushes and netting the cleaner prevented significant fouling development over a 10-week period. Scanning electron microscopy was used to identify the extent of residual fouling after cleaning, and the difficulty of removing fouling from crevices in the netting surface and from the sides of netting bars. The system can be highly effective, but the current design for presentation of the brushes greatly limits cleaning efficacy. The research has identified areas for design improvement, the problems associated with residual fouling and regrowth and the requirements for effective in situ net cleaning.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Fisheries sciences
Research Field:Aquaculture
Objective Division:Animal Production and Animal Primary Products
Objective Group:Fisheries - aquaculture
Objective Field:Fisheries - aquaculture not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Hodson, SL (Mr Stephen Lyndon Hodson)
UTAS Author:Burke, CM (Dr Chris Burke)
ID Code:10917
Year Published:1997
Web of Science® Times Cited:46
Deposited By:TAFI - Aquaculture
Deposited On:1997-08-01
Last Modified:2011-08-11

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