Oyster farming in Sardinia is quite recent and still underdeveloped and the breeding of the concave oyster triploid C. gigas is now the main activity of this sector of aquaculture.

SCUBLA has a unique know-how in the design and construction of Aquaculture plants, and also thanks to more than 35 years of collaborations, projects and supplies to universities and research institutes won the public tender for the supply of the hatchery for the OstrInnova project.
It is a source of great pride to see that important operators and researchers around the world decide to invest in the technology developed by a company like ours that has always believed in innovation and in the possibility of developing a sustainable aquaculture of the highest quality. For our part, we will make every effort to ensure that these selected facilities become a (worldwide) example of efficiency, quality and production mix.

Oyster farming in Sardinia is quite recent and still underdeveloped and the breeding of the concave oyster triploid C. gigas is now the main activity of this sector of aquaculture.
The area of lagoons where C. gigas can be reared is at least 2500 ha, of which oyster farming currently occupies only a small part. However, as a result of the imminent start of this activity by some fishermen’s cooperatives, the surface area of the areas used for rearing C. gigas is certainly destined to increase.
In order to increase oyster production in the coastal ponds of Sardinia, the International Marine Centre (IMC) of Torregrande (OR) has developed the OstrInnova cluster project, funded by Sardegna Ricerche.

The objectives of the experimental activity are as follows:

  • to identify and characterize suitable sites for the production of concave oyster in Sardinia; to implement and validate a predictive model for the growth of concave oyster applicable to the Sardinian lagoons;
  • experiment with new techniques and equipment for rearing according to the environmental characteristics of the lagoons; transfer the technologies, skills and methods for rearing oysters to the Sardinian fishing cooperatives;
  • to create a hatchery for the experimental production of triploid concave oyster through innovative techniques of oyster farming on the reproduction of the seed.

Within the laboratories of the IMC, International Marine Centre, SCUBLA has made technical proposals to improve and created this experimental hatchery that will test new diets and methods of production of triploid oyster. In this structure will be studied all the steps necessary for the growth and development of Crassostrea gigas, from the production of gametes from adult individuals to obtaining young individuals of a size suitable for sowing (spat), including the stages of fertilization, breeding and metamorphosis larval. The hatcher is therefore available to breeders and companies in Sardinia to promote sustainable development of the sector, with the aim of increasing scientific knowledge and implement the productive potential of the island.

Scubla’s hatchery consists of two distinct culture systems.  In the first, we grow specific species of phytoplankton. Oysters will feed on whatever kind of phytoplankton that happens to be in the water in the wild.  In our laboratory, we are quite a bit more selective. We feed our culture of oysters, from microscopic larvae to small juveniles, a special mix of phytoplankton. This nutritious diet helps ensure that our oysters get the best start they can in life.
In the second system, we spawn oysters larvae and produce triploid oyster spat at a size of 4 to 6 mm, for a production capacity of up to 500.000 spat.
In addition, the proposed design will allow the hatchery to perform experimental activities, and to be used as a tool for research and development applied to the production of oysters as well as other invertebrate species (e.g. mussels, clams, or sea urchin).
After the oysters are big enough to leave the hatchery, it is no longer necessary to feed them.  All of their nourishment comes from naturally occurring phytoplankton.

Then the small oysters are taken to the “nursery” locality which is a protected place where baby oysters go to grow for the first year of their lives.
Our nursery system is located in Stagno di Cabras , a 2200 hectares brackish salt pond on Sardinia . The seed is initially placed in a set of submerged containers known as a floating upwelling system (or FLUPSY).
We developed a custom-built, electric motor powered system that flows large volumes of water through thick beds of seed oysters, which helps push algae from the pond into the hungry mouths of our young oysters.

There are many techniques used to grow out oysters, and we employ one of the most efficient and environmentally-conscious forms.
Of the 500.000 oyster seed that are raised in the nursery, we keep just a small amount for ourselves to grow out. The majority of the seed will be sold to other fishermen’s cooperatives in Sardinia.

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