Biological oceanography and Pacific oyster physiology in a novel oyster-growing region

The environmental dynamics and productivity of high latitude nearshore regions, and the impact on Pacific oyster aquaculture, are poorly understood. This project provides an assessment of the seasonal dynamics of oceanography, phytoplankton communities, and oyster tissue quality over 3 years of sampling at a Southeast Alaska oyster farm. The results of this study provide a better understanding of nearshore dynamics in the estuarine environment of Southeast Alaska’s inside waters to aid in future site suitability analyses and improve our understanding of Pacific oyster exposure to stressful and beneficial conditions. This region is also prone to spatially and temporally discrete harmful algal blooms (HABs), and the data collected in this project can improve our understanding of the conditions that contribute to HAB events.

Principal Investigator/ Project Partners:

  • Becca Cates, NOAA AFSC
  • Julianna Cornett, NOAA AFSC
  • Jordan Hollarsmith, NOAA AFSC
  • Cody Pinger, NOAA AFSC
  • Kelly Koehler, NOAA AFSC
  • Kate Laboda, NOAA AFSC
  • Courtney Hart, University of Alaska Fairbanks
  • Muriel Dittrich, University of Alaska Fairbanks
  • John Harley, University of Alaska Southeast
  • Meta Mesdag, Salty Lady Seafood Company

Project Term: 2021-2023

Funding: $180,000, NOAA Internal Call for Aquaculture Funds