A Modelling Approach to Estimate the Environmental and Productive Carrying Capacity for a Mediterranean Coastal Marine Culture Park
- *Corresponding Author:
- Campuzano FJ
MARETEC, Instituto Superior Técnico
Universidade de Lisboa
Av. Rovisco Pais, 1049-001
E-mail: [email protected]
Received Date: June 17, 2015 Accepted Date: July 06, 2015 Published Date: August 16, 2015
Citation: Campuzano FJ, Gutiérrez JM, Senabre T, Mateus MD, Perán A, et al. (2015) A Modelling Approach to Estimate the Environmental and Productive Carrying Capacity for a Mediterranean Coastal Marine Culture Park. J Aquac Res Development 6: 373. doi:10.4172/2155-9546.1000373
Copyright: © 2015 Campuzano FJ, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Fish farming activities are a relevant economic coastal resource in the warm oligotrophic Mediterranean waters. This work describes the application of a numerical model to determine the carrying capacity of a mixed gilthead seabream (Sparus aurata) and European seabass (Dicentrarchus labrax) culture in a Marine Culture Park, located in the coast of the Region of Murcia (SE Spain). The MOHID modelling system was used to simulate the hydrodynamics and ecological conditions of the study area, and to address the processes related to fish farming activities such as pellet deposition of different sizes, nutrient recycling and oxygen consumption. The productive carrying capacity (PCC) and the environmental carrying capacity (ECC) were evaluated under different production scenarios with critical values for the culture and the environment. The selected indicators to assess PCC were the toxic level of ammonia species and the dissolved oxygen concentrations necessary for cultured fish survival. The ECC was assessed by means of eutrophic levels both in the sediment and the water column and the tolerance of benthic organisms to organic matter sedimentation. Results led to the definition of the minimum distances between installations, so to minimize their negative interactions, and to the quantification of the influence of dissolved and particulate products on the production. Finally, it was evaluated the capacity of the aquatic system to maintain the simulated biomass without undesirable environmental disturbance. The methodology employed in this work can be adapted to any system and cultured species, thus providing significant support to management decisions regarding the intensity of fish farming activities.