Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Aquaculture Nerdvana

I'm in aquaculture heaven.

In the last few days, I've seen algal culture systems, marine baitfish culture research, clam culture, snail culture, oyster culture, and pompano culture.
Sorry I didn't post on Monday ... I got up at 3 AM and drove straight to Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute for aquaculture training ... after I went to bed at midnight.
Three hours of sleep, 4 hours of driving, and 8 hours of training wiped me out. After class, I ate some take out Chinese (Kung Pao) and hit the rack early to catch up on my beauty sleep.

I can do a little product endorsement here though. You know that 5 Hour Energy stuff in the little bottle?
Well, let me tell you, it works... instantly. An hour into my early morning drive had me feeling too tired and noddy to be safe. I had a bottle of that stuff along with me ... just in case.

After only a few sips, I was feeling quite perky and the rest of the drive was a breeze.

I would definitely use it again when coffee wasn't available.

It did get me safely to Harbor Branch where I have been quite spongelike in my attempts to absorb all the knowledge in this Mecca of aquaculture.

The tiny specs above are very young pompano fish. Pompano are high value fish in the jack family. Unlike the rest of their family, they are considered to be a delicacy and demand a high price at the market or in a restaurant.
In less than a year, they go from egg to a market sized fish and are a hot aquaculture species.

Here's a flash picture of a pompano grow-out tank. It's a large circular tank and one of many inside a Harbor Branch aquaculture building. They keep the lights dim and the tank is black, so I had to use flash to stop the action of the fish who were just going NUTS as I stood by the tank to photograph them. They think when someone steps up onto the platform that they are going to be fed, so it's FRENZY time.

I have a short video clip of this, but it doesn't want to upload tonight so I will have to keep trying on that one.

It's going to be a fishy week here at Pure Florida.


tai haku said...

fishy weeks are the best kind of weeks! Loving the tankbred ocellaris header photo btw - I used to have a pair of those that ended up going to be broodstock in another aquaculture facility - awesome little fish.

kathy a. said...

you must be in heaven!

Robert V. Sobczak said...

Stay away from those energy drinks: they are dangerous ... but so is driving in wee morning hours in half sleep state. Best bet is a good night sleep probably, but not always possible. Which makes me think: maybe that energy drink wasn't a bad idea after all. (Hopefully you are not addicted!)

Floridacracker said...

Ditto fellow fishophile! There must have been a zillion clowns in the facility we visited.

Kathy A,
I am totally stoked!

I only use them on that rare occasion where they are warranted, unlike many of my students who stay high on them. I don't have an addictive personality anyway.

Kittikity said...

*puts on sponge cap* Bring on the knowledge! Wish you lived closer so I could come visit and learn until my head's swimming..

Kittikity said...

Oh, btw, I grew up in a city in south Florida called Pompano.. Its just above Ft. Lauderdale..

Bill said...

Aren't you the lucky one with your non-addictive personality. Wish I could say the same. I am hooked on the internet... I always take the energy drinks with me when we go on any long drive. They help a lot coming home at 3 am after the mighty Gators have crushed another hapless opponent. Of course you don't get to sleep right away, who cares when you are celebrating. Enjoy the fish.


Sayre said...

Mmmm... pompano! Every now and then we can catch them here. Delicious!

Sounds like you had a really interesting day. Did you do this on your own, or was it "professional enrichment"?

TROLL Y2K said...

Way cool. Pretty sure we still lead the world in Aquaculture. At least until the Obamanation starts subsidizing the Newark Aquaculture indusry.

threecollie said...

Your new header is incredible! I am eager to hear more about your fishy adventure!

SophieMae said...

Dude! That header is AbFab!
I'm one of those that immediately starts worrying that they're way too crowded in there. Or is that just another FOOOOOOOD!!!!!! moment?

I'm so excited for you. What a wonderful opportunity! They definitely picked the right person.

cinbad122 said...

I hope you are enjoying yourself while we FRI here!

Floridacracker said...

I know Pompano, but haven't been there in a very long time.

I spoke too soon, I'm obviously addicted to blogging about Florida critters and such!

i chased down this training opp on my own, , but it is definitely pro development. Icing on the cake that I love the subject.

This place is a perfect example of a public institution doing the research and then turning the info over to the private farmers to do.

ThreeCollie and Sophie,
Aren't they cute? They were only massed like that because they were in a packing house about to be bagged and shipped to various pet stores across the world.

I hear it's brain death.

cinbad122 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cinbad122 said...

It is nothing new...Right now we are talking about accreditation. Boy am I listening!!!