Bulletin of Japan Fisheries Research and Education Agency - n° 50 - February 2021 - Oyster aquaculture using seagrass beds as a climate change countermeasure

Abstract: In the framework of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) led by the United Nations, coastal management methods are required to achieve both sustainable food production and environmental conservation as a climate change countermeasure. Oyster farming is an important food production method now being developed in coastal areas around the world. Recently, climate change has caused several negative effects on oyster aquaculture such as poor spat collection due to oligotrophication, ocean acidification, and poor spat growth and survival due to frequent anoxic events derived from high seawater temperature. The oysters cultivated in many regions of the world are intertidal species inhabiting intertidal zones such as sandy/muddy tidal flats and estuaries, where seagrass beds are often distributed in adjacent lower intertidal and subtidal areas. Seagrass vegetation is one of the most important ecosystems functioning as a countermeasure for global climate change. Not only does it mitigate greenhouse gas emissions by sequestration and storage of blue carbon derived from atmospheric CO2, but it also functions as an adaptation measure providing a buffering function against ocean acidification and water quality improvement.
Based on the concept of aquaculture supported by natural ecosystem interactions between oysters and seagrass beds, our project examined whether aquaculture techniques that take into account both mitigation and adaptation to climate change are effective for both sustainable use of coastal areas and environmental conservation. We conducted field experiments in both the French Mediterranean Sea and the Seto Inland Sea of Japan to clarify the effect of eelgrass beds on (1) natural oyster spat collection and (2) growth and survival of oyster spat. The results of our experiments revealed that spat recruitment was significantly higher in areas without eelgrass distribution, while spat growth and survival rate after the settlement were significantly higher in eelgrass beds even when anoxic events occurred in the study areas. Therefore, our results indicate a possibility that seagrass vegetation contributes to sustainability of oyster aquaculture by mitigating environmental degradation during cultivation.


oyster aquaculture, Zostera, Crassostrea gigas, blue carbon ecosystem, integrated coastal management

How to cite
Hori Masakazu, Hamaguchi Masami, Sato Masaaki, Tremblay Réjean, Correia-Martins Alana, Derolez Valerie, Richard Marion, Lagarde Franck, President of Japan Fisheries Research and Education Agency: Masanori Miyahara (2021). Bulletin of Japan Fisheries Research and Education Agency - n° 50 - February 2021 - Oyster aquaculture using seagrass beds as a climate change countermeasure. Bulletin of Japan Fisheries Research and Education Agency. (50). 123-133. https://archimer.ifremer.fr/doc/00696/80767/

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