Forms of aquaculture

Why aquaculture


Which specie

Problems associated with aquaculture

Cultivating molluscs

Cultivating blue mussels

Cultivation methods

Problems associated with mussel cultivation


Poisonous mussels?



Cultivation metods

There are several ways of cultivating blue mussels and these methods vary from country to country. Those methods that we will describe below are bottom, pole, rope, raft and long line cultivation.

The poles mark areas owned by different mussel farmers in the
Oosterschelde in the Netherlands.

The development of bottom cultivation of blue mussels has mainly taken place in the Netherlands where prerequisites such as long shallow bottoms, protected areas and adequate water exchange exist. Cultivation is accomplished in such a way that mussel larvae are caught in rich areas and transplanted in long shallow areas where cultivation takes place. Work is conducted from flat bottomed boats that are about 20 metres in length and have moon pools that enable the dumping of small mussels within cultivation areas. Each of these boats are crewed by three men. The largest such area in the Netherlands is known as the Waddenzee, and area protected from the North Sea by a row of islands. The small mussels are often transported from areas that are drained under long periods at low tide and therefore grow slowly. Within cultivation areas, the water is so deep (3 - 10 m) that even at low tide the mussels remain submerged and are therefore able to continually take up nutrients from the surrounding water. Because of the strong currents in these areas, the mussels are usually full of sand and therefore must be cleaned. Every third year the mussels are harvested by either scraping or pumping them up from the bottom.

Previous page

Page 9 of 18

Next page

Home    Contents   Inspiration    Facts    Collaboration  
© Aquascope 2000   Tjärnö Marine Biological Laboratory, Strömstad, Sweden
Bo Johannesson | Martin Larsvik | Lars-Ove Loo | Helena Samuelsson