2011/751 Improvement of abalone nutrition with macroalgae addition

2011/751 Improvement of abalone nutrition with macroalgae addition

By Matthew Bansemer



This project initiated the use of macroalgal production as feed additives for abalone. The research project focuses on the use of three taxa of macroalgae to improve the nutrition, health and production of abalone. Southern Australia (SA) has one of the most diverse marine floras in the world with more than 1,150 species recorded, of which many (~70%) are endemic to the region (Phillips 2001). Despite macroalgae being an important dietary component in Asian countries such as China, Korea and Japan for thousands of years, few commercial enterprises in Australia currently produce or utilise macroalgae (Winberg et al. 2009). SA also has an excellent national and international “clean and green” image that has consolidated its reputation for high quality seafood products. This project aims to use macroalgae as a value-add product to feed abalone for domestic and export markets.

The development of a macroalgal industry in Australia is presently limited by readily available examples of cost effective “farm to market” value chains. The key objective of this project was to demonstrate cost effective way of using selected macroalgae species as feed for abalone. This research provides the necessary momentum to substantially grow and diversify the SA based macroalgae industry and build its linkage with abalone aquaculture industry.

This project aimed to:

  1. Determine the protein requirements of two sizes of Greenlip Abalone cultured at three different water temperatures to obtain protein levels for diet formulation in subsequent experiments.
  2. Understand the contribution of non-protein enriched macroalgae to the flesh quality of juvenile green lip abalone.
  3. Quantify the amount and kind of macroalgae required for a beneficial effect of abalone.
  4. Evaluate the feasibility of using macroalgal diets for abalone growth in field.