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Dispersal and assimilation of an aquaculture waste subsidy in a low productivity coastal environment


White, CA and Nichols, PD and Ross, DJ and Dempster, T, Dispersal and assimilation of an aquaculture waste subsidy in a low productivity coastal environment, Marine Pollution Bulletin, 120, (1-2) pp. 309-321. ISSN 0025-326X (2017) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

2017 Elsevier Ltd.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.marpolbul.2017.05.042


To understand dispersal and assimilation of aquaculture waste subsidies in a naturally low-productivity environment, we applied a novel, rapid transmethylation technique to analyse sediment and biota fatty acid composition. This technique was initially validated at Atlantic salmon farms in Macquarie Harbour, Australia, where sediments were collected at farm and control locations. Subsequently, sediment, benthic polychaete and zooplankton were sampled at sites 0, 50, 250, 500 and 1000 m distant from multiple cages. Results demonstrated an acute deposition zone up to 50 m from cages and a diffuse zone extending 500 m from cages. Changes in sediment concentration of linoleic acid, oleic acid and total fatty acids were effective tracers of farm deposition. Bacterial biomarkers indicated that aquaculture waste stimulates bacterial productivity in sediments, with elevated biomarker concentrations also detected in benthic polychaetes. Overall, fatty acid analysis was a sensitive technique to characterize the benthic footprint of aquaculture influence.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:aquaculture, bacterial productivity, biomarker, salmon, fatty acid, Macquarie Harbour
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Marine and estuarine ecology (incl. marine ichthyology)
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Terrestrial systems and management
Objective Field:Assessment and management of terrestrial ecosystems
UTAS Author:White, CA (Dr Camille White)
UTAS Author:Ross, DJ (Associate Professor Jeff Ross)
ID Code:123161
Year Published:2017
Web of Science® Times Cited:18
Deposited By:Sustainable Marine Research Collaboration
Deposited On:2017-12-19
Last Modified:2018-03-23

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