Sustainable Aquaculture Projects, Research, Education and Technology Advancements
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Ground Breaking Research Leads Aquaculture Industry

UWSP-Northern Aquaculture Demonstration Facility
Fall Newsletter 2016


Cascades Successfully Spawn in Year 2

Project is leading the sustainable production and availability of Atlantics as a food fish species...

The Cascade strain Atlantic salmon broodstock at UWSP NADF are now spawning for the second time, beginning in October. The broodstock spawned for the first time fall of 2015. They are now 4 and 5 year olds and reaching over 40lbs. Although most all salmon species are terminal spawners, fortunately the Atlantics are not; they have the ability to spawn multiple times throughout their lifetime. The first progeny from 2015  as well as this year's progeny will used to create a new Cascade strain of broodstock working with a private industry partner out of Washington state.

 Due to this public-private partnership, the eggs from this new broodstock will be available to Wisconsin farmers to raise Atlantics sustainably in water reuse systems for food fish production.

Cover- Air spawning a female Atlantic salmon (Left to Right: Emma Wiermaa, Kendall Holmes, Patty Munsell).
Top- UWSP NADF Intern Mackenzie Klemek holds up a large mature male Atlantic.
Bottom-Last year's progeny of Cascade strain Atlantic salmon broodstock.


Fish-meal Free Diet for Walleyes

New research suggests a fish meal free diet for walleyes showing no difference in growth, performance or survival as well as better water quality in RAS compared to traditional feeds...

UWSP NADF was involved in rearing walleyes for the study: Walleye performance, water quality, and waste production in replicated recirculation aquaculture systems when feeding a low phosphorus diet without fishmeal versus a traditional fishmeal-based diet. 

This work was recently published in Aquaculture Engineering. Partners included: UWSP NADF,  The Conservation Fund’s Freshwater Institute, Iowa State, USDA Agricultural Research Service, and North Country Clear Waters LLC. Not only did the study result in similar growth performance, survival,  and feed conversions in walleye raised on fish meal free diets compared to fishmeal diet, but also better water quality. Fish meal free diet resulted in half the phosphorus in the culture tanks and lower total waste loads compared to the fish meal diet...

Read the Article in Aquaculture Engineering...

Top- Saugeyes raised in a recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS)
Bottom- 5 month old saugeye raised in RAS at UWSP NADF


Effects of Sea Lamprey Parasitism on Lake Trout

Ground breaking research will reveal the effect sea lampreys have on the 45-75% of Lake Trout that survive an attack, helping to preserve this important Great Lakes species...

Michigan State Doctoral Candidate, Tyler Firkus, has been busy at UWSP NADF as the project: Sub-lethal effects of sea lamprey parasitism on lake trout is underway. This hard work will pay off however, as this is ground-breaking research. It is estimated that 45-75% of lake trout survive a sea lamprey parasitism event.  The sub-lethal physiological effects of sea lamprey parasitism on their hosts are likely to have significant population and management implications.  Yet we currently know little about how fish respond to sub-lethal parasitism events or how these events alter growth, body condition or reproduction.  Because of this gap in knowledge, it is likely that we are underestimating the damage caused by sea lamprey parasitism on lake trout populations.

The project is utilizing a 11 year old broodstock of siscowet and lean morphotypes of lake trout housed at UWSP NADF. The UWSP NADF is the only known facility in the world that has a captive mature broodstock of siscowet lake trout available for this study.  This never before seen data will be used to assess how lake trout physiology is altered after a parasitism event. The information will also be used to refine current physiological and bioenergetics models to better predict how sub-lethal Sea Lamprey parasitism affects growth, reproduction, and population structure. The data from this project will be most important for understanding and preserving  lake trout populations in the Great Lakes.

Top- 11 year old Lake Trout Broodstock
Bottom- Tyler Firkus stands in front of the new tank system he built for the parasitism project with the assistance from UWSP NADF.


Aquaculture Outreach

Just in October, UWSP NADF has outreached to over 400 students K-12 through community events and classroom visits...

Through both Ashland High School's Career Day and Bayfield High School's Science Fest, over 400 students and families learned the opportunities for aquaculture careers with hands on activities including; understanding the various aquaculture species, using a pit tag reader on fish cut outs, learning about fish shocking gloves and even handling real fish eggs spawned from Atlantic salmon and lake trout!

Read more in the article:
"Wisconsin Science Festival- It's Not Just a Madison Thing"

Top- Bayfield Science Fest students hold up a replicated size of the Atlantic Salmon broodstock at the UWSP NADF.
Bottom- UWSP NADF Outreach Specialist, Emma Wiermaa, holds up various fish species for the students to identify species and pit tag number.


Bottom Cover Photo: Spawning lake trout prior to exposure to sea lamprey for parasitism study. Left to right: Tyler Firkus, Greg Fischer, Kendall Holmes.


Workshops, Trainings, and Events

  • The Aquaponics Master Class is November 10th in Montello, WI. This is a 3-day comprehensive workshop offered by Nelson and Pade, Inc. ® that covers all aspects of aquaponics and controlled environment agriculture. In partnership with UW-Stevens Point, 1-college credit or continuing education units (CEU) are available for those that complete this workshop in Montello, Wisconsin This class if offered every few months. Register or learn more...
  • AQUACULTURE AMERICA 2017 on February 19-22nd in San Antonio, TX having the largest aquaculture trade show in the Western Hemisphere and the only major national aquaculture conference and exposition held in the U.S. Register through the World Aquaculture Society... 
  • Introduction to Aquaponics is a full semester online course offered by UW-Stevens Point and business partner, Nelson and Pade Inc.® on February 27, 2017. It is available as either a two credit or three credit course.  All lectures and discussions take place online The three credit option includes a 3-day lab session at Nelson and Pade, Inc.®’s demonstration greenhouse in Montello, WI.The course is open to students at UWSP as well as students from other colleges and universities through UWSP Continuing Education. Register or find more information...

Check out all our current Research, Demonstration
and Outreach Projects


University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Northern Aquaculture Demonstration Facility

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