Aquaculture is the farming of aquatic lives like fish, crustaceans, mollusks and aquatic plants. It is a properly planned farming that is held under mild conditions. Farming suggests some form of intervention in the rearing process to increase production, such as regular stocking, feeding, protection from predators, etc. Farming also suggests the individual or corporate ownership of the stock being cultivated for some time. Moreover, in current aquaculture practice, products from several pounds of wild fish are used to make one pound of a piscivorous fish like salmon. It may involve many other framings as well. Special kinds of aquaculture include fish farming, shrimp farming, oyster farming, mariculture, algaculture and the cultivation of ornamental fish. Special methods include aquaponics and integrated multi-tropic aquaculture, both of which integrate fish farming and plant farming.
Harvest stagnation in wild fisheries and overexploitation of popular marine species, mixed with a growing demand for high-quality protein, supported aquaculturists to breed other marine species. At the inception of modern aquaculture, many were optimistic that a Blue Revolution could occur in aquaculture, just like the Green Revolution of the 20th century had revolutionized agriculture. Though land animals had long been bred at homes, most seafood was still caught from the wild. Concerned about the impact of growing demand for seafood on the world’s oceans, prominent ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau wrote in 1973. With earth’s burgeoning human populations to feed, we must turn to the sea with new understanding and new technology.
Consequence and significance:
Almost 430 (97%) of the species produced as of 2007 were bred at home during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, of which an approximate 106 appeared in the decade to 2007. Given the long-term significance of agriculture, it is crucial to note that to date only 0.08% of known land plant species and 0.0002% of known land animal species have been domesticated, as compared to 0.17% of known marine plant species and 0.13% of known marine animal species. Domestication usually involves about a decade of scientific research. Domesticating aquatic lives take fewer risks to humans than do land animals, which took large money in human life. Most major human diseases began in domesticated animals, including diseases like smallpox and diphtheria that like most pernicious diseases spread to humans from animals. No human pathogens of comparable virulence have yet appeared from marine lives.
Biological control methods to administer parasites are already being used such as cleaner fish to control sea lice populations in salmon farming. Models are being used to help with spatial planning and siting of fish farms to minimize impact.
The decline in wild fish stocks has supported the demand for farmed fish. However, it is necessary to find alternative sources of protein and oil for the fish feed so the aquaculture industry can grow sustainably; otherwise it represents a great risk for the over-exploitation of forage fish.
Another recent issue following the banning in 2008 of organ tins by the IMO (International Maritime Organization) is the need to find environmentally friendly, but still effective, compounds with antifouling effects.