The pearl oyster (Pinctada margaritifera) aquaculture in French Polynesia and the indirect impact of long-distance transfers and collection-culture site combinations on pearl quality traits
|Author(s)||Ky Chin-Long1, Broustal Floriane1, Potin Dan1, Lo Cedrik2|
|Affiliation(s)||1 : Ifremer, UMR 241, EIO, Labex Corail, Centre du Pacifique, BP 49, 98719 Taravao, Tahiti, Polynésie Française
2 : Direction des Ressources Marines et Minières, BP 20, 98713 Papeete, Tahiti, Polynésie Française.
|Source||Aquaculture Reports (2352-5134) (Elsevier BV), 2019-03 , Vol. 13 , P. 100182 (8p.)|
|WOS© Times Cited||2|
|Keyword(s)||Pearl oyster, Pinctada margaritifera, Graft combinations, Pearl quality traits, Environment|
In French Polynesia, the P. margaritifera pearl aquaculture industry is spread over a vast area, as large as Europe. All the oysters for this the highly economically important activity are supplied from just a few collection lagoons, but they are grown in numerous sites across three archipelagos (Gambier, Society and Tuamotu). Many oyster transfers thus indirectly bring about grafting combinations mixing different geographic origins and production sites. This study aims to examine the impact of such graft combinations on cultured pearl quality traits. For this, six homogeneous and standardised experimental graft combinations (N = 6197) were conducted at commercial scale in the two growing locations the most frequently used in French Polynesia: Arutua atoll (Tuamotu) and Mangareva island (Gambier), using oysters supplied from by the top three collection sites: Ahe, Takapoto and Mangareva lagoons. At harvest, four main pearl quality traits: nacre weight deposition speed, pearl colour components (darkness level and green overtone), grade and shape categories were recorded by a professional sorter from the Tahiti auction and compared. Results revealed effects of the combinations of oyster origin and grow-out location, with: 1) significant origin ´ site interaction for nacre weight deposition speed; 2) colour variation at intra- and inter-site scales, with Ahe origin producing the most dark pearls and Gambier highest rate of the attractive green coloured pearls; and 3) higher grade categories for the Gambier origin and rearing location. These oyster-site combination effects highlight the benefit for the Polynesian pearl industry of switching from a mono-site/ company production system to a new multi-site production strategy to maximize overall cultured pearl quality expression