Farming for Fish? Webinar will explore how to get started

Webinar series for beginning farmers includes an overview of this fast-growing business sector.

Aquaculture tanks are shown in a recirculating aquaculture facility. Photo: Todd Marsee | Michigan Sea Grant

Aquaculture tanks are shown in a recirculating aquaculture facility. Photo: Michigan Sea Grant

A Beginning Farmer webinar series taking place throughout winter and spring 2017, seeks to assist farmers across the country with starting up and improving their agricultural practices. This series of nine webinars includes “Getting Started with Aquaculture.” The aquaculture webinar will be held 7-9 p.m. April 10, 2017. The cost is $10 for individual webinars, or $45 for access to the entire series.

Aquaculture, or fish farming, is the fastest growing sector of the seafood industry. While global demand for seafood continues to rise, wild catch of fish has not increased and, in some cases, it has decreased as wild fisheries have been overharvested. Michigan is well suited for aquaculture with its vast water resources and increasing demand for local agriculture products. The aquaculture industry in Michigan is currently less than a $5 million industry. A recent strategic assessment of aquaculture in Michigan states that there is potential for growth up to a $1 billion industry. Aquaculture in Michigan can be a way to supply high quality locally produced products.

The Michigan Sea Grant and Michigan State University Extension webinar will introduce a variety of subjects for farmers interested in pursuing the innovative farming techniques of aquaculture. Topics covered will include market demand, types of aquaculture systems, aquaculture facilities in Michigan, and what is needed to start your own facility.

Seminar: Fish Spawning Reef Planning Techniques

reef-restoration-graphic

This seminar will be held in conjunction with the International Association for Great Lakes Research (IAGLR) 2017 conference in Detroit. You do not need to register for IAGLR to participate.

A number of factors, including construction of shipping channels, land use changes and dams, have degraded rocky fish spawning habitat or made it inaccessible to native, migratory fish. One method for compensating for spawning habitat losses is to construct fish spawning reefs, essentially beds of loose rock placed on the river bottom that provide adequate protection and flow through the rocks for egg incubation. Though simple in concept, reef projects need to be carefully sited and designed to avoid accumulating sediment, attract desired fish and support young fish through the critical early life stages.

This team- taught seminar will share techniques developed through eight reef projects established in the St. Clair and Detroit River System over the past fifteen years. Specific topics will include: site assessment and selection, hydrodynamics and sedimentation concerns, reef design and construction strategies and monitoring of early life stages of fish.

One highlight of the workshop will be a practical lesson on river hydraulics and sediment transport and a hand-on exercise with free river modeling software, led by a scientist from the USGS Geomorphology and Sediment Transport Lab. This interactive seminar is open to all types of restoration practitioners, including professional engineers, project managers, researchers and anyone hoping to champion, design or monitor a constructed spawning reef in Great Lakes nearshore areas, connecting channels or larger rivers.

Date: Monday, May 15, 2017
Time: 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Location: IAGLR’s Great Lakes Research Conference, Cobo Center Room 258, 1 Washington Blvd, Detroit, Michigan
Continuing Education: Seminar participants will receive a certificate showing they completed 7 hours of continuing education suitable for professional license renewals.
Cost: $75 for professionals, $30 for students 
Registration deadline: 5:00 p.m., May 10, 2017
Cancellation: No refunds will be issued for cancellations after May 5.

For professionals ($75):
 

For students ($30):

For questions, contact:
Lynn Vaccaro
University of Michigan Water Center
Lvaccaro@umich.edu
(734) 763-0056